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Fostering Regulations

There are several sets of acts and regulations that provide statutory guidance on any adoption and fostering service covering, among other things, the monitoring, training, review, assessment and approval of foster carers. The safety, security, education, health and welfare for a child or young person in care are primary concerns and there needs to be adequate financial support to provide these things.

The philosophy behind the requirements and regulations are encompassed in Every Child Matters (ECM), a government initiative that detailed the outcomes that are desired and expected for every child. These outcomes were being healthy, staying safe, enjoying and achieving, making a positive contribution and achieving economic wellbeing. Today we simply look to define specific, achievable, child-focused outcomes intended to safeguard and promote the welfare of the child and identify how progress will be measured.

The legislation is always under review and guidance and regulations are updated to reflect the current state of affairs.

The Children Act 1989 Guidance and Regulation was updated on 3rd July 2015. This is an essential 5-volume set of rules and regulations regarding looked after children. Volume 4 focuses on the factors applicable to fostering services.

The Care Standards Act 2000 contains the National Minimum Standards 2011 (NMS) and applies to numerous entities including fostering agencies. The NMS is the gold standard for guidance for fostering providers and comprehensively details the minimum standards and regulations for children, looked after children, and adoption which along with the Fostering Services Regulations 2011 is the basis of the regulatory framework that regulates and monitors the conduct of fostering services as set out by the Care Standards Act 2000.

The Children Act 2004 established a Children’s Commissioner and makes provision “about services provided to and for children and young people by local authorities and other persons.” It also covers private fostering.


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The Fostering Services (England) Regulations 2011 applies to England only and regulates all fostering services, both in the independent sector and the local authority. The Care Planning, Placement and Case Review (England) Regulations 2010 also applies to England only and it specifies how the placement of looked after children is monitored and reviewed and the responsibilities for planning for children in care. Care Leavers (England) Regulations 2010 focuses on young people leaving the care system.

The Children and Families Act 2014 self describes as an “Act to make provision about children, families, and people with special educational needs or disabilities; to make provision about the right to request flexible working; and for connected purposes.” While it is not specifically directed at foster families, this Act does relate in that a foster parent has responsibilities for the children and young people who have been placed with them.

Capstone Foster Care ensures that every looked after child is placed with a foster carer whose home, family and friends have been assessed and accepted as suitable for the task of providing the child with the best possible outcome. Our reviews have been glowingly positive and our legal team is up-to-date with the most recent changes and amendments in the foster regulations.

If you plan to read any of the regulations, they are available online. You don’t need to special order them. If you want to know more about the regulations that are pertinent to you, contact Capstone for more details on 0800 012 4004 or simply click here.

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