A clear understanding of the roles, abilities and requirements of the foster parents is necessary for effective coordination with OKDHS staff and the children and families served. Oklahoma foster parents have:
The right to be treated with dignity, respect and consideration as a professional member of the child welfare team.
The right to receive timely financial reimbursement for providing foster care services.
The right to be provided a clear, written explanation of the individual treatment and service plan concerning the child in the foster parent’s home.
The right to be notified of scheduled review meetings, permanency planning meetings and special staffing concerning the foster child in order to actively participate in the case planning and decision-making process regarding the child.
The right to communicate with other professionals who work with the foster child within the context of the team including, but not limited to, therapists, physicians, and teachers.
The right to be given, in a timely manner, any information regarding the child and the child’s family which is pertinent to the care and needs of the child and to the making of a permanency plan for the child.
The right to be informed of decisions made by the court, the state agency or the child-placing agency concerning the child.
The responsibility to integrate the child into the foster family setting and care for the child as the foster parent would care for his or her own child.
The responsibility to provide mentoring services to the child’s parent(s) and coordinate visitation and contact whenever possible to facilitate timely reunification, including phone and mail contact when appropriate.
The responsibility to work as a multidisciplinary team member with the Child Welfare worker and the child’s parent(s) toward family reunification or other permanency plan.
The responsibility to help the child learn appropriate behavior without using physical punishment.
The responsibility to ensure the child’s necessary medical, dental, and counseling needs are met.
The responsibility to notify the Child Welfare worker of all medical and educational problems and progress.
The responsibility to ensure the child’s opportunity to participate in the religious practices of the child’s family’s choice, including the provision of transportation to worship services other than those of the foster parent, and to ensure a child in foster care is not made to attend religious services against the child’s wishes.
Complete details about foster parents rights and responsibilities can be found in Title 10 (Link opens in new window) of Oklahoma Statutes and OKDHS Foster Care Policy.