Standards for private organizations

2020 Edition

Adoption Services (AS) 10: Temporary Care for Children Awaiting Placement

Foster parents provide temporary care that ensures the health and safety of infants awaiting adoption.

Interpretation

When the case involves an American Indian or Alaska Native child, the tribe or a local Indian organization and the Bureau of Indian Affairs should be notified of the decision to temporarily place an infant awaiting adoption in a foster home.

Interpretation

 This section is intended for programs that provide short term, temporary care for children, usually newborns, while they await placement, typically in states where direct placement with prospective adoptive parents is not possible and do not otherwise provide foster care services.

NA The program does not provide temporary care for children awaiting placement or the program provides such care through its foster care program.

NA The organization provides home study and/or child-focused recruitment services only

NA The organization provides post-placement services only.

NA The organization provides foster-to-adopt services only.

2020 Edition

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Purpose

Adoption programs establish permanent family relationships for children in need of permanency, and increase the well-being, functioning, and stability of children, birth parents, adoptive families, and adopted individuals.
1
All elements or requirements outlined in the standard are evident in practice, as indicated by full implementation of the practices outlined in the Practice Standards.
2
Practices are basically sound but there is room for improvement, as noted in the ratings for the Practice Standards; e.g.,
  • Minor inconsistencies and not yet fully developed practices are noted; however, these do not significantly impact service quality; or
  • Procedures need strengthening; or
  • With few exceptions, procedures are understood by staff and are being used; or
  • For the most part, established timeframes are met; or
  • Proper documentation is the norm and any issues with individual staff members are being addressed through performance evaluations and training; or
  • Active client participation occurs to a considerable extent.
3
Practice requires significant improvement, as noted in the ratings for the Practice Standards. Service quality or program functioning may be compromised; e.g.,
  • Procedures and/or case record documentation need significant strengthening; or
  • Procedures are not well-understood or used appropriately; or
  • Timeframes are often missed; or
  • Several client records are missing important information; or
  • Client participation is inconsistent. 
4
Implementation of the standard is minimal or there is no evidence of implementation at all, as noted in the ratings for the Practice Standards; e.g.,
  • No written procedures, or procedures are clearly inadequate or not being used; or 
  • Documentation is routinely incomplete and/or missing.      
Self-Study EvidenceOn-Site EvidenceOn-Site Activities
  • Policy for licensure, approval, or certification of homes
  • Procedures for licensure, approval, or certification of homes
  • Procedures for foster home assessments, including criminal background checks
  • Procedures for visits to foster homes
  • Training curricula 
  • Interviews may include:
    1. Relevant personnel
    2. Foster parents
  • Review case records
  • Review foster parent records

 

AS 10.01

Prior to placement, foster homes are licensed, approved, or certified according to state, tribal, or local regulation and foster parents have completed all required training.


 
Fundamental Practice

AS 10.02

Prior to placement, the organization:

  1. assesses the home to identify any safety concerns; and 
  2. conducts criminal background and child abuse registry checks for all adults living or frequently in the home in accordance with applicable federal and state requirements.
Examples: Individuals living in the home share common areas, sleep in the home, and have lived there for more than two weeks. Individuals frequently in the home can include for example, a child care provider.  

 
Fundamental Practice

AS 10.03

The program coordinates needed healthcare services for the child, and foster parents are trained to respond to the healthcare needs of the child.


 

AS 10.04

The adoption worker visits the foster parents and the child:

  1. within the first two weeks of placement; and
  2. at least once a month while in temporary placement to evaluate safety and needs.

 
Fundamental Practice

AS 10.05

Each foster family develops or uses the organization’s protocols for responding to emergencies, including accidents, serious illness, fire, and natural disasters.


 
Fundamental Practice

AS 10.06

Foster parents who transport children in their own vehicles:

  1. use age-appropriate passenger restraint systems;
  2. properly maintain vehicles and obtain required registration and inspection;
  3. provide the organization with validation of their driving records; and
  4. appropriate insurance coverage.

Interpretation

Regarding elements (c) and (d), this information should be provided as frequently as necessary, based on the amount of time licenses and insurance are valid. For example, if licenses are valid for two years, license validation can occur every two years. Regarding validation of appropriate insurance coverage, it is suggested that the organization maintain a copy of each foster parent’s auto policy declaration.

Note: In some cases this standard may not be applicable to all foster parents (e.g., if foster parents live in urban areas and utilize public transportation instead of their own vehicles).