THE SELECTION OF FOSTER PARENTS FOR PARTICULAR TYPES OF FOSTER HOME CARE (CHILD WELFARE, LENGTH OF PLACEMENT)

CHARLES H AUERBACH, Fordham University

Abstract

Most of the research on selecting foster parents has focused on matching children with specific behavioral characteristics to foster parents felt most likely to be successful with them. There has been no research which addresses the relationship of the length of care to the specific characteristics desired for a foster parent who will be most suited for a given length of time a child will need placement. The length of care can be seen as three distinct types of foster home care: temporary, intermediate or long term.^ Based upon the judgements of five experts in child welfare, the best representation of each type of foster home care was selected. In the second stage 97 social work practitioners rated the same series of 76 foster parents' characteristics for the selected case vignettes representing the three types of foster home care defined above.^ Five abstract concepts related to the selection of foster parents emerged: (1) family relations, (2) tolerance toward the natural mother, (3) role model, (4) child care, and (5) emotional well-being.^ Through the use of analysis of variance the degree of each concept's importance to each type of care was determined. This study revealed that among a group of 97 social workers, specific types of foster parents can be distinguished for the three types of foster home care: temporary, intermediate, and long term.^ "Tolerance toward the natural mother" was rated as having more importance in the temporary and intermediate types of care. "Family relations" was considered very important for both the intermediate and long term types of care. "Child care" was the only concept that was seen as having some importance for each of the three types of care, but most important for the long term type of care. Although the concept of "role model" emerged from the factor analysis, this concept, as compared to the other four, had very little relationship with each of the three types of care. As for the emotional well-being of the foster parent, this concept was rated as very important in terms of selecting foster parents for the temporary type of care and non significant for both the intermediate and long term types of care. (Abstract shortened with permission of author.) ^

Subject Area

Social Work

Recommended Citation

CHARLES H AUERBACH, "THE SELECTION OF FOSTER PARENTS FOR PARTICULAR TYPES OF FOSTER HOME CARE (CHILD WELFARE, LENGTH OF PLACEMENT)" (January 1, 1985). ETD Collection for Fordham University. Paper AAI8615679.
http://fordham.bepress.com/dissertations/AAI8615679

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