Foster Care Adoption – How Do I Know If I Should Accept a Placement

August 26th, 2021 by dayat Leave a reply »

Foster care adoption is a growing need in a society more and more able to adopt from oversees. There are many children waiting to be adopted in the U.S but there are even more who are just coming into the system. If you are already in the process of becoming licensed to foster children and are wondering who your first placement may be, it can be very intimidating.

New children to the system don’t come with a label to help you know how to help them. Often though, if you know what questions to ask, case workers can give you information about the child that will help you decide if this child will fit into your family. Remember that taking in a child out of pity because you want to help, and not considering what you have to offer that child, can be more damaging than saying no to the placement. Foster kids don’t just need foster parents, they need parents. Prepare yourself to be 100% committed to these children even if they leave you to go back to their families.

Case workers and agencies have an obligation to find homes for children who are in danger. Because of this, they will often only tell you a fraction of the story. Most will not out right lie to you but their caseloads are often large and overwhelming and they just need to get kids placed in safe homes. Be prepared to ask questions to get a full picture of what you are committing to.

We were only interested in long term placements and wanted to adopt so it was very important to us that we started off on the right foot. Early on in the process, we wrote down some questions that we kept by the phone so that we wouldn’t get caught up in the excitement of bringing a new child into our home without knowing what kind of baggage this child would bring with him. We wanted to be the best parents we could be and needed as much information as possible. Here is a list we came up with to help us with our decision.

Questions to Ask When Case Worker Calls

1. How many foster homes have they been in?
2. What type of abuse have they been through?
3. Have they been neglected?
4. Can I have the number of their last foster home?
5. Why are they being moved?
6. Do they have special educational needs?
7. Are there siblings to keep in contact with?
8. If they have siblings, why were they separated and can we get them back together?
9. Are the parents still in the picture or are their rights being terminated?
10. How frequent are visits with family?
11. Who is expected to transport them and how far away are the visits?
12. When is their next court date?
13. Do they have any aggression issues toward young children or animals?
14. Have they been sexually abused?
15. How long do we have to decide?
16. Is this a long term placement?

100% commitment is the goal no matter what the child’s situation. These questions will help you make an informed decision and hopefully help you avoid a failed placement.


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