Foster, adoptive, and kinship families work to support the permanency plans of the children and families they serve on a daily basis. One key component of that support, that can often be overlooked is the importance of attending juvenile court hearings on behalf of the children placed in their homes.
In 2021, a Foster Parent Bill of Rights was codified into law in North Carolina. One right listed is that all foster parents have the right to receive notice of any hearing regarding children placed in their home and to be heard in court, either verbally or in writing, as provided by North Carolina General Statute 7B-906.1.
Once a foster parent has received notice of a court hearing, what next? What is the foster family’s obligation? How should they prepare?
Fosteringnc.org, North Carolia’s online learning site for foster, adoptive, and kinship families now provides a training for all foster, adoptive, and kinship families entitled “Court: Roles and Obligations of Foster Parents.” Beginning May 1, 2022, this training is a required part of pre-service training for all licensed foster parents in North Carolina. For existing licensed foster parents, they will be required to take the training online prior to their next re-licensure.
According to Fosteringnc.org, the training specifically focuses on:
- “the roles of key players in the court process,
- the types of court hearings in child welfare,
- the responsibilities of foster parents in court proceedings, and
- North Carolina’s Foster Parents’ Bill of Rights.”
Visit fosteringnc.org to learning more about this critical topic and to complete the training.