4.4.4 Youth with Elevated Needs-Level A Resource Family

A Youth with Elevated Needs-Level A resource family is utilized to achieve specific treatment goals. Level A resource providers have acquired skills in managing and modifying problematic child behaviors. Level A foster care is not an emergency placement or first placement. Upon successful completion of a youth with elevated needs foster care program, the child may move to a less structured setting, i.e., traditional resource family care or return to the biological parent. Level A foster care should be considered for those children with the following presenting problems:

  • Behaviors which, if not modified, could result in the youth being designated as a status offender;

    Related Subject:  Section 4, Chapter 14, Youth with Elevated Needs

  • History of irresponsible or inappropriate sexual behavior, which has resulted in the need for extraordinary supervision;
  • Threatening, intimidating, or destructive behavior which is demonstrated by multiple incidents over a period of time;
  • Problems of defiance when dealing with authority figures;
  • Significant problems at school that affect academic achievement or social adjustment;
  • Significant problems with lying, stealing, or manipulation;
  • Significant problems of temper control;
  • Mild substance abuse problems;
  • Oppositional behavior which contributes to placement disruptions and inability to function productively with peers, parent figures, birth family, etc.;
  • Any of the above behaviors, coupled with medical problems; or
  • Any of the above behaviors displayed by one or more children of a sibling group, qualifying the entire sibling group for placement together, if appropriate. However, not all children would be eligible for the Level A maintenance rate, only those staffed and approved for the program.

Working with the Child with Developmental Delays

Children with developmental delays may, or may not, be appropriate for Level A Foster Care. Appropriateness for Level A Foster Care should be based on evaluation of the clinical and behavioral characteristics surrounding that particular child. Children should not be ruled out for Level A foster care based solely on the singular characteristic of an IQ score falling below 65. Instead, the team should consider a variety of information, including the following:

  • Child’s functioning level;
  • Severity of developmental delays;
  • Ability for self-care;
  • Type of behavior problems;
  • Level of physical aggressions;
  • Age;
  • Compliance;
  • Need for supervision;
  • Strengths; and
  • Challenges.

The Department of Mental Health/Division of Developmental Disabilities (DD) can be very valuable in providing expertise about and support for these children and their foster parents or caregivers. If a referral for services to DD has not been made in these instances, the case manager should do so immediately by contacting the appropriate DD Regional Office.

Chapter Memoranda History: (prior to 1/31/07)

Memoranda History: