Credit hours:

Course Summary

Welcome to a course designed to help foster parents and caregivers regarding permanency for foster youth. In this course you will learn that Permanency comes in many different shapes and sizes, and that different people can provide different types of permanency for foster youth. We believe permanence is vital to a foster youth’s success in life, therefore we plan on expanding on this topic with future courses.

In this course, you can expect to learn:

  • The federal definition of permanency
  • Statistics for permanency outcomes
  • Your role in helping children establish permanence
  • Youth perspective about permanence and build skills to speak to youth about permanence

Step 1

Read this FosterClub Real Story written by Aaron Weaver explaining how achieving permanency can make a significant contribution to a young person’s time spent in care.

Step 2

Read "Permanency: More Than Just Homes". The article was written for CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocate) volunteers, but contains relevant and valuable information for foster parents and caregivers

Step 3

Read pages 1-5 of "Court Hearings for the Permanent Placement of Children" from the Child Welfare Information Gateway.

Step 4

Review the National Foster Youth Advisory Council's (NFYAC), a group of young leaders who have experienced foster care, top ten recommendations for Ensuring Permanency for Youth in the Foster Care.

Step 5

Young people have a need for permanence even after they leave foster care. Read "You don't age out of family", a blog written by Julia Charles, a #FosterClubLeader.

Step 6

Join the discussion in the comments below to answer the following question:

Do you think foster parents need to pay most attention to the federal definition of permanency or the youths' definition? Why?

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Course Discussion

aggieerik's picture

aggieerik said:

The federal definition is a good starting point for policies. Reunification is preferred, but not many children can appreciate how dysfunctional some of these families are. Foster parents need to operate within the legal framework but must protect the children from the dysfunction related to the entrance into foster system.
aarmentano's picture

aarmentano said:

I think it is important for the caseworker and foster parent to define the federal definition of permanency to the foster child. The caseworker & foster parent should listen and try to empathize with the foster child's definition of permanency.
Lowell Everett Fox's picture

Lowell Everett Fox said:

I believe the Federal government and children are both are important for different reasons. The federal guidelines outline the process and responsibilities until childhood is officially non longer a minor. The child's definition is important because it is the key for long term positive mental health..
Awalls's picture

Awalls said:

I feel that both the federal and youth aspect should be adhered. The youth knows what they want and who they like and want to be around. They should be considered first and listened to the most. Federal is a matter of courts and what it means to have permanency.
Jrocha100's picture

Jrocha100 said:

The youth's definition, because every child's needs and defintion of permanency is different and unique to that child. It is not a "one size fits all."
Beckydedge's picture

Beckydedge said:

Both but you better believe I fight for my youth's definition and feelings. They matter more than the government to me!
bennetthobbs's picture

bennetthobbs said:

I think that the federal definition should be made to match the youth definition.
Sheena725's picture

Sheena725 said:

The foster family should take into account both definitions. They should look at how permanency is defined by federal and by the youth. In order to understand the laws one must look at the law to understand it. So that they know which line they are riding when it comes to permanency. They should take into account the definition of the youth because they are the ones that are being placed. It is important to see it how they see it so that things can be further explained or clarified. That's why both are important.
Chris Diller's picture

Chris Diller said:

To me its obvious that both definitions are important to each entity/person. As the foster parent, my focus is on the needs of the child in foster care. Attaining permanency as quickly as possible is good, and whatever I can do to facilitate that must be a goal of mine to work towards. But, to me, of even greater importance is the adult my foster child will become. Why do we do the things we do? Do we care about our foster kids or not? If we do, we need to help maintain these connections if at all possible, and if desired by the foster child.
cindypearson's picture

cindypearson said:

I believe it should be the child's. Because all children are created differently, as meaning of their feelings. Each child knows the way things make them feel. And what comforts them emotionally etc. Children are smarter then some people give them credit.