California CalWORKs Outcomes and Accountability Review (Cal-OAR)

Cal-OAR Update

Pursuant to SB 89 (Chapter 24, Statutes of 2017), Cal-OAR was initially authorized and designed as a three-year cycle.

The passage of AB 79 (Chapter 11, Statutes of 2020) delayed Cal-OAR implementation during State Fiscal Year (SFY) 2020-21 and extended the length of each Cal-CQI cycle from three-years to five-years.

With the passage of AB 135 (Chapter 85, Statutes of 2021) Cal-OAR funding is reinstated for State Fiscal Year (SFY) 2021-22 with the first Cal-OAR cycle beginning July 1, 2021 and concluding June 30, 2026.

Reference ACL 20-95 for more details concerning the State Fiscal Year (SFY) 2020-21 Cal-OAR Pause and ACIN I-60-21 for more details concerning the Cal-OAR funding reinstatement, effective July 1, 2021.

What is Cal-OAR?

Cal-OAR is a local, data-driven program management system that facilitates continuous improvement of county CalWORKs programs by collecting, analyzing, and disseminating outcomes and best practices. As required by Welfare and Institutions Code (WIC) 11523, Cal-OAR consists of three core components: performance indicators, a county CalWORKs self-assessment (Cal-CSA), and a CalWORKs system improvement plan (Cal-SIP).

The Cal-OAR continuous quality improvement (Cal-CQI) process (which includes the Cal-CSA and Cal-SIP) will take place over five-year cycles. The first Cal-OAR cycle commences on July 1, 2021 with the implementation of Cal-OAR.

See the Cal-OAR CQI Process Overview

CDSS has worked with a stakeholder workgroup since September 2017 to develop the Cal-OAR workplan (which includes the structure and substance of Cal-OAR). Workgroup members included stakeholders specified by statute, including current and former CalWORKs clients, advocates, county staff, legislative staff, as well as a variety of other subject matter experts.

See the Cal-OAR Workplan

CDSS has a whole team devoted to implementation of Cal-OAR and supporting our county and stakeholder partners!  If you need support, please see our Program Improvement and Performance Section (PIPS) County Contacts list for the CQI Specialist assigned to your county.

Check back regularly for additional information and details as Cal-OAR is implemented statewide!

Contact Us

California CalWORKs Program
Outcomes and Accountability Review (Cal-OAR)
Email: Cal-OAR@dss.ca.gov
Phone: (916) 657-2128


Cal-OAR Stakeholders wishing to be added to the Cal-OAR distribution list may email the Cal-OAR inbox at Cal-OAR@dss.ca.gov, using the subject line “Distribution list”.  We look forward to connecting with you!

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