Assessing the Field of Post-Adoption Services: Family Needs, Program Models, and Evaluation Issues. Case Study Report. 6.6 Professional Training

11/01/2002

PAS providers continued to explore training methods and topics for adoptive parents and professionals.

Providing training to professionals on adoption issues is a basic component of all PAS programs studied. PAS providers in all five states reported offering professional training, on adoption-specific issues and child development issues. Training audiences included child welfare workers, mental health professionals, teachers and other school staff, court system staff, and medical practitioners. Topics offered to professionals included cross-cultural competency, transracial adoption, attachment in adoption, respite care for adoptive families, education law and advocacy, and openness in adoption.

Training mental health professionals to be aware of the specific needs of adopted children and families was a concern among PAS coordinators/providers and adoptive parents. Georgia was sponsoring a training program on attachment therapy for mental health providers. Oregon was considering a model that was being piloted in Washington, in which the state collaborates with a local university to offer a certificate program in adoption issues to mental health practitioners.

In several case-study states, the PAS providers themselves also received training. For example, one regional PAS provider in Virginia with extensive experience in training around adoption issues provided training on a regular basis to the other PAS providers. Georgias crisis intervention services provider offered ongoing training in adoption issues for other team members.

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