The Child and Adolescent Needs and Strengths (CANS) Assessment Tool

Healthcare professional interacting with child Pursuant to the Continuum of Care Reform (CCR), county child welfare agencies are implementing the California Integrated Practice Child and Adolescent Needs and Strengths (CANS) Assessment tool.According to its developer, John Lyons, the CANS is a multi-purpose tool that supports decision-making, including level of care and service planning, which allows for the monitoring and outcome of services.When used as part of the CFT process, as California is doing, the CANS Assessment can help guide conversations among CFT members about the well-being of children and youth, identify their strengths and needs, inform and support care coordination, aid in case planning activities, and inform decisions about placement.

CANS Resources

CANS Videos and Webinars


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The Praed Foundation is a public charitable foundation committed to improving the well-being of all through the use of personalized, timely and effective interventions.

Latent Class Analysis

Thank you for your interest in obtaining the Latent Class Analysis for your agency. Before submitting your request, we first ask that you review the attached Child and Adolescents Needs and Strengths (CANS) and LCA overview flyer to familiarize yourself with how the LCA illustrates the latent class distribution of need and strengths of children, youth and NMD’s in foster care in your county. Additionally, we recommend you view the Innovation on Population Health’s Director, Dr. John Lyon’s informational video which describes how LCA data can translate into person centered supports and services.

Only Counites can request their own LCA distributions.

To receive a meaningful LCA distribution, please ensure the CANS for your county are current and up to date in CARES-Live. CDSS receives the CANS necessary to conduct the LCA from CARES-Live, per ACL 21-27. CDSS receives the CANS data necessary to conduct the LCA from CARES-Live.

Once you’ve completed the steps above and verified your CANS are entered into CARES-Live, please submit your request for the LCA distributions using this link: CANS Latent Class Analysis Distribution Request Form (

CDSS is capturing requests in the order received and will coordinate with the point of contact identified once your analysis is ready. If you have any questions, please email the Integrated Services Unit at

Latent Class Analysis: LCA Overview

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Integrated Services Unit 
744 P Street, MS 8-3-570
Sacramento, CA 95814  
(916) 651-2752

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