Keeping Safe - Keeping Safe - Promoting Positive Behaviour and Relationships with Children in Foster Care
AMENDMENTIn September 2020, this chapter was updated to include links to current Hertfordshire guidance documents.
1. Statutory Framework
Regulation 12 (1) of the Fostering Services Regulations 2011 (FSR 2011) requires fostering service providers to prepare and implement a written policy which is intended to safeguard children placed with foster carers from abuse or neglect and sets out the procedure to be followed in the event of any allegation of abuse or neglect.
Regulation 13 of the FSR 2011 requires that fostering service providers prepare and implement a written policy on acceptable measures of control, restraint and discipline of children placed with foster parents. Standard 3 of the Fostering National Minimum Standards (2011) (FNMS 2011) requires that this policy is made available to children and their families as well as to placing authorities prior to placement.
Standard 3 of the FNMS 2011 requires foster carers to encourage children to take responsibility for their behaviour and help them to learn how to resolve conflict. The approach taken to care by the Fostering Agency is expected to minimise the need for police involvement to deal with challenging behaviour.Standard 4 of the FNMS 2011 requires that foster carers are trained in appropriate safe-care practices including skills to care for children who have been abused. (including training specifically on issues affecting disabled children).
Hertfordshire has issued guidance and procedures to all foster carers and this is available on the Hertfordshire Fostering Page CSF3993 Promoting Positive Behaviour and Relationships with Children in Foster Care.
2. Safe Caring Guidelines
Safe caring guidelines are to be provided, based on a written policy, for each foster home, in consultation with the carer and everyone else in the household. These guidelines must be cleared with each child's Social Worker and be explained clearly and appropriately to the child.
Assessing Social Workers should ensure that guidelines are produced during the assessment process. Social Workers should ensure that all members of the household are involved in this process and agreement is reached on the final guidelines.
Review of Guidelines
Safe caring guidelines will need to be revised as the circumstances of the household change.
This should be done immediately if there are significant changes such as someone joining the household or the carers move house. In such cases the revised guidelines will need to be cleared with the Social Worker of any child in placement.
The guidelines should also be considered at the point of every child's review or Placement Agreement review to ensure they remain up to date and appropriate. See CS0476F10 Safer Care Family Policy.
3. Fostering Service Guidance on Preventing and Responding to Bullying
Standard 3 of the Fostering National Minimum Standards 2011 requires fostering services to ensure that carers have positive strategies for effectively supporting children when they encounter discrimination and bullying. This requires that procedures are put in place to recognise, record and address any instance of bullying and to help carers cope with it.
Click the link to access Hertfordshire's guidance for foster carers - CSF4008 Fostering Service Guidance on Preventing and Responding to Bullying.