During the process of becoming a foster parent, you'll interact with a variety of child care professionals:
The county worker, or case worker, is responsible for:
- Placing the child
- Monthly visits with the child in the foster home
- Arranging family visitation and transportation
- Developing a case plan for approval by the court detailing family requirements
- Assuming primary responsibility to properly investigate and communicate all medical and psychosocial issues to the prospective family in a timely manner
The county supervisor is the immediate supervisor of the county worker. If you cannot contact or do not feel comfortable with the county worker, they will become an important resource. The county supervisor also provides medical consent for routine procedures and medical care.
The county supervisor's supervisor, who provides consent for nonroutine or major medical procedures.
A GAL (guardian ad litum) is a person who represents the sole interest of the child in court. Some are volunteers, public defenders or private attorneys.
A magistrate is a judge who ultimately makes the legal decisions related to custody, visitation issues and other safety issues.
The case aide transports the child to and from visits with their biological family. The case aide also supervises family visits. Transportation to and from, as well as supervision of the visits are the county's responsibility.
The medical doctor's office helps to:
- Obtain and deal with the child's medical history
- Provide consistency in the child's life, which may be unstable due to changing environments between homes
- Make recommendations to the Department of Job and Family Services and the court about medical and safety issues