Foster Parent Kinship Caregiver FAQs

Yes. The caseworker must have monthly visits with foster parents and relative caregivers of children placed by DCYF.

  • Visits with children and caregivers may occur during the same monthly visit although the visits will be separate;

  • Location of the visit may vary.

The caseworker will:

  • Discuss the child's well-being and permanency goals;

  • Discuss upcoming court hearings and provide a court report if the hearing is scheduled to happen within 14 days;

  • Observe the child and caregiver relationship and home environment (when the visit occurs in the caregiver's home);

  • Assess the caregiver's ability to provide adequate care;

  • Identify any support or training needs/requests for the caregiver to address placement stability;

  • Inquire about visitation with parents and/or siblings and how is child responding;

  • Discuss the child’s normal childhood activities the child participates in, or is interested in;

  • Discuss any requests to significantly change the child’s appearance.Prior approval must be obtained from the parent, court, and Tribe, if the child is Native American and legally free. Changes that need prior approval include, but are not limited to, body piercings, haircuts, and changes in hairstyles.

  • Share the parent’s interest in the child’s care and requests for participation in normal childhood activities.

Yes, you can attend all court hearings. Let the worker know you plan to attend the hearing. If you want the worker to tell the court you are present, ask the worker in advance to do so. Some caregivers prefer to not have their attendance called out to the court; it is your decision.

As a caregiver, you are entitled to know about the date and time of the child’s court hearings. Here are some ways you can learn when the court hearing is scheduled:

  • When the child is first placed with you, let the assigned worker know you need the court date.
  • Ask the assigned worker for the date and time of the next hearing at the child’s next Health and Safety visit.
  • When you receive a copy of the child’s Court Report, check the front page; the date of the next hearing is printed there.
  • If you attend the court review hearings, the court sets the date and time for the next review during the hearing.

Caregivers are encouraged to attend and are welcome at the child’s court hearings. Caregivers are entitled to notice of the child’s scheduled hearings. Caregivers are usually most interested in the six month reviews and the 12 month permanency hearings. We understand it may not always be possible for you to attend, due to your work schedule or other caregiving needs. It is also important to know that long wait times are not uncommon at court.

Many of the dependency courts schedule multiple hearings at the same time. The court then decides which hearings will go first. Sometimes there can be a lengthy wait for your foster child’s hearing (which may only last about 10 minutes). Sometimes the court continues the child’s hearing to another date. Whether you attend the hearing or not, we encourage all caregivers to complete the Caregiver Report to the Court form and provide it to the child’s assigned worker about 10 days prior to the hearing, or take it with you for distribution at the Court hearing. Obtain the Caregivers Report to Court here: https://www.dshs.wa.gov/fsa/forms (enter form # 15-313)

Workers should always let caregivers know when a child has a scheduled court hearing. Some hearings are procedural; this is a brief court appearance where the judge reviews an administrative requirement, or continues a scheduled review hearing. These hearings are covered by the Department’s attorney and even the workers aren’t required to appear. 

There may have been a change in assigned worker. The new worker may not be aware you haven’t been notified. Any time you want to know when the next court hearing is scheduled, please ask the worker or his or her supervisor for that information.

The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has an excellent website with information on the flu: http://www.cdc.gov/flu/faq/flu-season.htm

There is growing mistrust about flu vaccines. The fact is that vaccines are the greatest medical advance in history. They’ve prevented more illness and death than any treatment.

No, it is impossible for the flu vaccine to give you the flu. Flu vaccines contain dead virus, and a dead virus can’t infect you. The nasal vaccine contains live virus, but the virus is specially made to remove the parts of the virus that make people sick.

Yes, there are flu vaccines that don’t contain egg proteins which approved for use in adults age 18 and older. Flu vaccines that do have egg proteins can be given safely to most people with an egg allergy. If you have questions or concerns, you should talk directly to your health care provider.

Many people use the term “stomach flu” to describe illnesses with nausea, vomiting or diarrhea. Nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea are not caused by the flu. The flu is a respiratory disease and not a stomach or intestinal illness.