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Foster Carers Written Answer, 24/04/13 [S]

Written Answer given in response to Jackie Baillie's (Lab) question asking the Scottish Government whether it monitors the performance of local authorities in dealing with applications to become a foster carer; ow long an applicant should expect to wait for an application to become a foster carer to be determined by a local authority; and how many applications to become foster carers in each of the last two years were determined in less than a year, broken down by local authority.

The Minister for Children and Young People, Aileen Campbell, replied that the Care Inspectorate are responsible for inspecting foster care services against national care standards which cover recruitment, assessment and approval of foster carers. As part of those duties they examine the processes and practices of dealing with applications to foster. This includes formal processes and support.

The Care Inspectorate in their holistic inspection of children’s services consider the outcomes for children who are assessed as requiring fostering services which includes how local authorities commission fostering services.

National Care Standard 6 against which foster care agencies are inspected, states that applicants should be made aware that the assessment will be completed within 6 months from the date of receipt of their application unless unforeseen circumstances prevent this.

It further states that prospective foster carers will receive regular feedback on the progress of their application (at least once a month) and that there are clear indications given of any work that is needed to further the process.

As part of the inspection process the Care Inspectorate seeks feedback from foster carers on their experience of the service and the support they receive from the agency, whether local authority based or independent.

For the full answer to this and other questions see the Scottish Parliament Written Answer Report 24 April 2013 which is available from the Scottish Parliament website.

Further Information

Scottish Parliament Written Answer Report 24 April 2013