Credit hours:

Course Summary

This course is designed to help foster parents and caregivers understand and support 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. FosterClub believes permanence is vital to a youth in and from care's success in life, and that foster parents can play a vital role in this helping youth establish this.

In this course, you can expect to learn:

  • The federal definition of permanency

  • Statistics for permanency outcomes

  • Your role in helping children and youth establish permanence

  • Youth perspective about permanence

  • Build skills to speak to children and 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, and 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 the blog "You Don't Age Out of Family" written by Julia Charles, a FosterClub Lived Experience Leader.

Step 6

Read this FosterClub Real Story by Aleks Talsky about the importance of educating young people on their permanency options and allowing them agency to determine their own permanency plan.

Step 7

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

What actions will you take to ensure children and youth in your care have an active role in their own permanency plans?

Step 8

Finished the module? If you are logged in as a subscribed user, take the quiz to earn your Continuing Education Credit hours and certificate!

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Course Discussion

VictoriaAllison's picture

VictoriaAllison said:

I think that foster parents need to find a balance between following the federal definition of permanency and the youths' definition. It's important to realize that the federal definition was created for a reason and it should not be completely ignored but foster parents still need to pay attention to the youths' definition because they're the ones who the definition is for and they know themselves so they know their needs.
EllenArwen's picture

EllenArwen said:

It's important to understand the youth's definition of permanency. While not every foster home can provide permanency directly, every foster home can work to support permanency.
Annabelle Russell's picture

Annabelle Russell said:

It is important to understand the federal definition of permanency, but at the same time it is always important to listen to your youth. Each youth is different and nothing is ever by the “textbook.” Listening to your youth and allowing them to let you know what they need and want is important and it helps build a stronger relationship.
AmandaFernandes's picture

AmandaFernandes said:

Do you think foster parents need to pay most attention to the federal definition of permanency or the youths' definition? Why? I believe that both definitions are important in their own way. The Federal one is quite important but listening to the youth is also significant in fostering a great relationship.
Micaht333's picture

Micaht333 said:

We definitely need to listen to the youth and want they not only need but what they want. That is how we build better relationships with more likelihood of permanency.
PattiH's picture

PattiH said:

We need to know the definition means. But I feel my home is permanent for my kids they do not leave until themselves or legal have/want to.if my home is not their last stop (adoption) I try to make it the last stop off to permanent..
tmmhndrsn's picture

tmmhndrsn said:

I think every foster parent should know the law on permanency and definition of it. But I also feel children have rights and should be heard, they have a right to have a permeant home and support
km16471's picture

km16471 said:

Of course Federal Definitions and Regulations on Permanency are import, but I feel it is extremely important to listen to youth also. We need to make sure their needs and feelings are validated. They have already been through so much. They should have some input into what their permanent home looks like. Don't just put a child in a home because it works for the government. Make sure it works for all parties involved, especially the child.
ElizabethZeiger's picture

ElizabethZeiger said:

Do you think foster parents need to pay most attention to the federal definition of permanency or the youths' definition? Why? I think it is important to understand the federal definition of permanency, but to listen to your youth because every child is different. One size does not fit all.
joenangel's picture

joenangel said:

Federal definition is important to know and understand but it is also important to listen to the children as well.