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9.4 Minimum Standards For Fostering Services


  1. Introduction
  2. Structure and Approach

1. Introduction

The Fostering Services minimum standards document sets out the Standards that registered providers are expected to apply to their service. These are the minimum standards required and the Regulation of Care Act requires that the DSC considers these standards when making regulatory decisions; there are opportunities within the Standards for registered providers to be creative, innovative and dynamic when applying them to their service, and providers should use them as a baseline from which to deliver and develop services to the children and young people who use them.

As such, the standards are designed to be applicable to the wide variety of different types of children and young people accommodated, including children with disabilities or other special needs.

The Standards have been developed to require and encourage registered providers/managers to deliver services to children/young people that promote the following values:

  • Privacy;
  • Dignity;
  • Safety;
  • Choice;
  • Realising;
  • Potential;
  • Equality and Diversity.

Respect and enrichment of lifestyles are also a focus within the standards and providers should be able to demonstrate that in addition to providing safeguards to children and young people their service enriches the lives of the people it serves and assist children and young people to move on and to continue to lead fulfilling lives in the community.

2. Structure and Approach

The minimum standards for fostering services focus on achievable outcomes for the children and young people being cared for; the impact on each individual child/young person of the services provided is central to this approach.

The standards are grouped under a series of key topics:

  • Statement of Purpose and Children’s Guide;
  • Fitness to Provide or Manage a Fostering Service;
  • Management of a Fostering Service;
  • Securing and Promoting welfare;
  • Recruiting, Checking, Managing, Supporting and Training staff and Foster Carers;
  • Records;
  • Fitness of Premises;
  • Financial Requirements;
  • Fostering Panels;
  • Short Term Break;
  • Family and Friends as carers.

Each standard is numbered and consists of a numbered heading and numbered paragraphs. Each standard is, for explanatory purposes only, preceded by a title and an indication of the intended outcome in relation to that standard.

The standards are intended to be a qualitative measure, in that they provide a tool for judging the quality of the service provided to each individual. In inspecting against these standards a consistent inspection methodology will be followed together with a reporting format that has been designed for use on the Island. Inspectors will look for evidence that the requirements of the standards are being met and that children are not disadvantaged by the service offered. Providers should use and develop the standards to secure positive welfare, health and education outcomes for children and young people being fostered and to reduce risks to their welfare and safety. It must be recognised, however, that observing the standards are only a part of the overall responsibility of a service to safeguard and promote the welfare of each individual child.

The standards can be accessed by Fostering Services Minimum Standards Registration & Inspection Unit.