The role of your supervising social worker

Foster carers have a supervising social worker to ensure that they are supported.

woman talking to another woman

Every foster carer has a supervising social worker allocated to them to support, advise and guide in every aspect of fostering.

A supervising social worker will:

  • keep in frequent touch with you, your family and children or young people in placement through regular visits and telephone calls
  • arrange for any additional support services needed
  • support you with attending meetings, writing reports, keeping records etc.
  • support you and help you to manage contact between the child/children and their birth relatives
  • identify foster carer training needs and help you to achieve your learning and development objectives
  • keep careful records of the progress of children placed with you
  • make all the necessary statutory visits.

Your social worker might be the same person who worked with you during your assessment to become a foster carer or it might be someone new.

Your supervising social worker also works alongside the child's social worker. They will work with you on matching a child who fits with your terms of approval and also fits with a child that you can see yourself fostering.

These social workers will keep in touch with the children/young person placed with you throughout their placement, make statutory visits, and make care planning decisions with and for them.

Your supervising social worker will carry out a review after your first year of fostering called an annual foster carer review.

Annual foster carer review

We will arrange a review of your first year as foster carer - this will take place with your supervising social worker. The review is presented to the fostering panel who will make a recommendation regarding your approval.

Fostering Services Regulations 2002 (Reg.29)

  • The service provider must review approval of each foster parent in accordance with Regulation 29 [Reg.29 (1)]
  • The review must take place no more than a year after approval and thereafter whenever the service provider considers it necessary but at intervals of not more than a year [Reg.29(2)]

The review can and often does recommend a change of approval such as being approved for more children change if the ages of the children you foster or different categories such as 'parent and child' or 'long term'.

Annual foster carer reviews are also a formal opportunity for the foster carers to give feedback to the panel both positive and negative about their year in fostering.

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Last reviewed
29 October 2015
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