The Reasonable & Prudent Parenting Standard

In September 2014, Congress passed the "Preventing Sex Trafficking and Strengthening Families "Act (Public Law 113-183; H.R. 4980). The Preventing Sex Trafficking and Strengthening Families Act established the "reasonable and prudent parenting" standard.
This established standard impacts 3 entities:

  1. Children’s Residential Treatment facilities
  2. Foster Care resource parents
  3. State Child Welfare staff

The Reasonable and Prudent Parent Standard is defined as careful and sensible parental decisions that maintain a child's health, safety, and best interest while at the same time encouraging the child's emotional and developmental growth, that a caregiver must use when determining whether to allow a child in out-of-home placement under the responsibility of the state to participate in extracurricular, enrichment, and social activities.

The Reasonable and Prudent Parent Standard includes cultural, social, enrichment, and/or extracurricular activities that are age and developmentally appropriate. The Children’s Residential Treatment providers and Foster Care Resource Parents must be trained on making sound decisions for the youth in their care.  Online, on-demand, training is available below

OCFS Director Letter  
Agency Agreement Letter  
Video Training  
PowerPoint Slides  

For more information contact:
Jennifer Dondero
Clinical and Community Resource Team Leader
OCFS/DHHS
151 Jetport Boulevard, South Portland
207-822-2062