5172. Considerations for Placements

When it is necessary to place a child or sibling group into foster care, the focus of the placement worker and the worker assigned to the child(ren) is first on meeting the child(ren)'s individual needs by providing the least restrictive possible placement. When the assigned worker requests a foster home for a child(ren), the placement worker consults the licenser, as appropriate, and considers the following when identifying a suitable home:

  1. The child(ren)'s proximity to their own home and family to facilitate visitation with parents.
  2. Closeness to the child(ren)'s school or child day care so that attendance is not disrupted.
  3. The foster family’s ability to meet the child’s cultural, linguistic, and religious needs. A foster family need not be of the same ethnic background as the child in order to meet the ethnic or cultural needs of a child. Unless CA staff identifies a compelling reason, CA staff will not match children on the basis of race to foster or adoptive families.
  4. In the case of behaviors that pose a danger to other children, a home that have either no children or children older than the child being placed.
  5. If many medical or counseling appointments are anticipated, the availability of a caretaker or substitute at home, which is essential with medically fragile or severely disabled/special needs children.
  6. The experience and skill level of the foster parent.
  7. The capability of the foster parent to meet the identified needs of the child, such as behavioral or physical needs. The placement worker uses these primary factors plus other case-specific and unique criteria as guides in searching for the most appropriate placement.