Working Together with Primary Families


This course examines the relationship between primary and foster families including:

  • primary families

  • shared parenting

  • grief and ambiguous loss

(4 hours, $20.00 per person)
A child in care has two families: the primary and the foster family. Research has shown that when these families work together, the child's confusion and anxiety are decreased and the likelihood of reunification increases. Nonjudgmental and respectful communication can be challenging, especially when histories and backgrounds differ or when abuse and neglect are part of the child's past. This course offers foster parents strategies for developing positive communication with and understanding of the primary family.

At the end of this course, you will be able to:

  • define "primary family"
  • describe the importance of the foster family's relationship with the primary family
  • describe the benefits and challenges of shared parenting
  • state the role of the child protection team
  • identify typical issues that bring primary families to the court system
  • give examples of grief and ambiguous loss
  • understand the role of empathy in foster care