Simply Fostering

Fostering Assessment Timescale

Free uk Application Service

Deciding to foster.

Hopefully, you will decide to take the next step and if so, we at Simply Fostering would like to thank you for starting the exciting journey to make a difference and becoming a foster carer.

We are always here as a source of reference about fostering and our free Handbook will help you to ask the right questions and to find answers about foster care in the UK.

Successful fostering

Being a foster carer is one of the most rewarding careers out there, but being with the wrong agency can mean not having the number, type of placements, and financial benefits you expected. Contact us and we will find you suitable agencies in your area with vacancies.

How Long Does It Take To Be A foster carer?

It takes 4 months to be a foster carer.

Providing the assessment process goes well and all the checks have been completed.

The Assessment Process explained

1 : Make An Enquiry – Simply Fostering

If you decide to complete our enquiry form, you will receive information packs from the most suitable Fostering Agencies in your area. This will give you the opportunity to read about what they have to offer, and which agency or agencies visit you.  You will also receive the free Simply Fostering Handbook

2 : Home Visit by the Fostering Agency

Following the initial visit and the decision to proceed, the Fostering Agency social worker will arrange to start your assessment. For couples, both applicants will have to undergo the fostering assessment, checks and training, as both applicants will need to be approved as foster carers before they can foster children

3 : Fostering Assessment Process

The assessment will involve about twelve home visits from the assessing social worker who will also visit your referees and any other relevant people.

The process is an enjoyable experience however it can be demanding and feel intrusive at times.

The assessment will cover all aspects of your life in depth. The Fostering Agency has to meet legal requirements and needs to ensure that they ‘get it right’ for the foster children you look after. Just as importantly, the Agency needs to get it right for you and your family.

Fostering Assessment Questions

The types of questions you will probably be asked:

  • Language and literacy – can you communicate clearly in English?
  • Time – do you work? If so, part-time or full? Will it affect your ability to provide care?
  • Accommodation – is your home suitable? Do you have any regular visitors?
  • Support network – do you have friends and/or family to support you?
  • Lifestyle – do you have any health conditions (physical or mental)?
  • Pets – are your pets safe for children to be around?
  • Relationships – do you have any ex-partners? Do you have a current partner?
  • Finances – do you consider yourself financially stable?
  • Diversity – are you inclusive of people from diverse backgrounds?

Assessment Training – Approved Foster Carers

As your fostering application proceeds, you will be invited to attend a training course. Most fostering agencies use the Fostering Network course called “Skills to Foster”.

The three or sometimes four-day fostering training course is arranged to be as convenient as possible for you and might be staged over weekdays, evenings or weekends.

The foster carer course gives you the opportunity to learn more about fostering, and is usually compulsory before approval. This is also a chance to meet other people applying to become foster carers and to hear what approved foster carers have to say about their experiences of fostering.

Foster children, families, care plans.

By the end of the assessment you will be expected to show you can develop the following skills:

  • The ability to communicate with children, their families and professionals;
  • An awareness of child development and the particular needs of foster children;
  • A willingness to work with the care plan for the child including working with their families;
  • Flexibility;
  • The ability to keep accurate records;
  • A willingness to attend meetings, support groups and training courses.

4 : Fostering Panel – Approved UK foster carer

At the end of the assessment, you will be invited to attend the agency’s Fostering Panel when your approval will be discussed and a decision made. Read more about the Fostering Panel.

Fostering information

Fostering assessment, training and education
You will find that the information below provided by the Department of Education .Gov is useful when thinking about and/or undertaking the fostering assessment.

UK Wide Fostering Network

Try these: South WestDevonExeter

If you live in the UK… We’ve got you covered.
We cover the length and breadth of the UK with our unique Agency Network. Finding an Agency near you and supporting your move into foster caring.


free fostering handbook

Free Fostering Essentials Handbook

By contacting us you are entitled to the Simply Fostering Essentials Handbook, a wall to wall guide to fostering.

An A-Z comprehensive guide to a range of useful fostering terms. Essential reading for any newbie foster carer. Includes subjects as varied as:

  • Parental Responsibility
  • Managing Behaviour
  • Human Rights
  • Reviews
  • Eat Disorders

Form Only Takes A Minute To Complete.

What Could You Earn?

Being a foster carer is not only an ethical career, it's also financially rewarding. Our calculators estimate what you could be earning.

Free Matching Service?

If you meet the UK criteria to foster. we will match you with a local Fostering Agency and ask them to call you.
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Free ‘Fostering Essentials #1’ E-book

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