Foster carers play an extremely important role, providing much needed support and security for often very vulnerable children, and enabling their successful transition into independent adult life. Fostering is a challenging role and requires skills and dedication.
The Training, Support and Development (TSD) standards form part of a foster carer's induction in the role. They provide a national minimum benchmark that sets out what foster carers should know, understand and be able to do within the first 12-18 months after being approved
These standards were developed by the sector and were introduced in 2007 and apply to all approved foster carers in England.
The TSD Standards provide a national minimum benchmark to set out what all foster carers should know, understand and be able to do within the first 12 months of approval. They form part of a national strategy, supported by the Department for Education, to
raise the profile of foster carers as valued professionals and to improve and
standardise service provision for looked after children.
All foster care providers are expected to engage with their foster carers to support them in achieving the TSD Standards. This ensures that the Standards are delivered in a way which allows carers to understand how the standards support them in their caring role, encouraging them to build on any areas for development identified in their assessment.
It is the government’s view that all foster carers who are approved under the Fostering Services Regulations should complete the TSD Standards, which are designed to equip all foster carers with the skills and knowledge to provide high quality care to the children they look after. The TSD Standards are also now a requirement of the National Minimum Standards (Fostering).
Completion of the TSD Standards is a requirement for all approved foster carers in England and is referenced within the National Minimum Standards for Fostering Services 2011.
Standard 5: Understanding the development of children and young people
5.1: Attachment and stages of development
5.4: Supporting play, activities and learning
5.5: Supporting educational potential
5.6: Understanding contexts
5.7: Promoting positive health and sexuality
5.8: Supporting disabled children and children with special educational needs