.05 Resource Parent Standards.

A. A local department shall recruit prospective resource parents in accordance with the needs of Maryland children who are currently in out-of-home placement.

B. Resource parents shall have the following characteristics:

(1) Knowledge of, interest in, and regard for the principles of good child care, understanding of the resource parents' responsibility in providing good child care, and the requirements for approval;

(2) Willingness to work cooperatively with local department personnel in:

(a) The best interest of the child;

(b) Implementing the case plan as defined in COMAR;

(c) Being accessible to local department staff by telephone and for home visits when requested; and

(d) Ensuring that the requirements of this chapter are met;

(3) Maturity and personality characteristics which:

(a) Make it possible to provide an emotional climate in which a child can benefit during temporary care,

(b) Create an atmosphere where social skills can be enriched,

(c) Help a foster child to understand placement in foster care and the child's own feelings about the placement, and

(d) Help maintain the family ties through regular and consistent family contact as required by the child's case plan;

(4) The flexibility to understand and work with lifestyles different from the foster parents';

(5) The capacity to value, respect, appreciate, and educate a child regarding the child's racial, ethnic, religious, and cultural heritage;

(6) The capacity to understand that it is in the best interest of a child of mixed racial parentage to have healthy multiracial experiences;

(7) The skills to promote the process of socialization through family life to enhance the child's growth and learning;

(8) The suitability in age and physical stamina to meet the demands of the care of growing children;

(9) The willingness to support and encourage a child's educational progress, and take an active role by attending school conferences and similar activities whenever possible;

(10) The ability to provide time free from the interference of other responsibilities, and to give a child the needed care and attention;

(11) The ability to provide adequate family life and meet the needs of a foster child, notwithstanding any employment outside the home; and

(12) Awareness of the way in which a child needs family life to grow and learn, and the ability to provide the child with the values which parents customarily provide, including training and opportunities for socialization, both as part of and outside the structure of the family.

C. Plans for Alternative Supervision.

(1) A local department may approve a plan for other adult supervision while the resource parent is employed or in school provided the plan shall:

(a) Include a care provider licensed by the Maryland Office of Child Care or another agency that provides child care services whose standards for licensing are in accordance with the Maryland Office of Child Care regulations or equivalent; and

(b) Include a criminal background and a protective services background check.

(2) A local department may approve a plan for other adult supervision for any reason other than that detailed in §C(1) of this regulation. The resource parent shall provide the local department with a written plan to provide for substitute care for a foster child for those instances where the resource parent must be absent from the home.

(3) Any plan for supervision by someone under 18 years old while the resource parent is away from the home shall be approved by the local department prior to implementation. The plan shall be consistent with COMAR 13A.15.08.01.