Training to become a foster parent or to adopt

The classes necessary to become a foster parent or adopt are often referred to as “pre-service training.” They usually happen right before or at the same time you’re completing your application to foster or adopt.

The process of training to become a foster parent or to adopt from foster care varies from state to state, and in some cases, from county to county. In general, pre-service training programs usually take from four to ten sessions to complete. They are required so you can have a better understanding of what your new child has been through and how to best integrate them into your family. Pre-service training is also an excellent opportunity to meet and share information with other families who are becoming foster parents or adopting.

It’s important to make a commitment to attending pre-service training sessions. In addition to being a non-negotiable part of being approved to adopt, the training sessions provide you with lots of important and useful information. If two people will be co-parenting, both will be required to attend.

During pre-service training, you will:

  • Prepare yourself for fostering or adopting a child
  • Create a basis for teamwork between yourself and your agency
  • Form mutually supportive relationships with other parents and child welfare staff who will be able to help you throughout your journey
  • Find answers to any lingering questions you might have about whether you’re ready to foster or adopt and what type of child you can successfully parent
Families talk about what they learned in training classes.

Things to do next: