Structured Decision Making Model (SDM)

SDM or Structured Decision Making is a case management system used in the delivery of child protection services. The SDM system is comprised of six assessment tools: Intake Assessment; Safety Assessment; Risk Assessment; Family Strengths and Needs Assessment; Risk Reassessment; and Reunification Assessment.

SDM has two major goals. Firstly, to reduce subsequent harm or maltreatment for children and families, and secondly, too expediate permanency and safe reunification. To achieve these goals, SDM has laid out several core objectives: structure critical decision points; increase consistency in decision making; increase accuracy in decision making, and to inform policy and practice through the use of data. 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

To learn more about implementing SDM at your agency and some of the common questions that agencies have when it comes to implementation please click here

For more information on training and on-site support please contact SFNFCI Learning Operations Director Jason Chickosis (306-250-4781 or or call SFNFCI main office phone number at 306-373-2874. 

SDM Manual and assessments

For the SDM Policy and Procedures Manual for Agencies not on Linkin (updated September 2020) click image below. 



1. SDM Intake

2. SDM Safety

3. SDM Risk

4. SDM FSNA (Family Strength and Needs)

5. SDM CSNA (Child Strength and Needs)

6. SDM Reunification

7. SDM Risk Reassessment


For a copy of SDM assessments please contact SFNFCI's SDM Consultant. 


SDM Learning Aids:

For an overview of the SDM Intake and Investigation process click here.

Intake Information Collection Guide click here.

Steps for SDM Safety Planning click here.

Parent/caregiver nonlinear notetaking record click here.

Child nonlinear notetaking record click here. 

SK Contact Standards quick reference click here

Three questions click here