Requirements for foster care workers too high, Kansas agency says
TOPEKA - Requirements to work in Kansas’ foster care system are too high, the agency in charge said Friday after a new audit found the state’s foster care contractors have difficulty employing enough workers.
Phyllis Gilmore, secretary of the Department for Children and Families, called the state’s requirements “overly restrictive (and) out of step with national trends.” She called on lawmakers to review the requirements.
Kansas requires foster care workers to be licensed social workers, and they must hold a bachelor’s degree in social work. Gilmore said nearly every other state does not require licensure, and that a handful of states do not require social workers to have social work degrees, but instead degrees in related fields, such as psychology.
“We believe we can further recruitment in Kansas by loosening restrictions,” Gilmore said.