At Compass, we understand the urgency of the national fostering situation.
We always work hard to approve our foster carers as soon as possible so that they can begin changing children and young people’s lives for the better as soon as possible. Our fostering Form F assessment is an in-depth process designed to get a real picture of who our fostering applicants are and what they would be like as foster carers.
However, this process can take up to 24 weeks. That’s where our Fast Track Assessment comes in!
What is a Fast Track assessment?
Our new Fast Track Assessment is aimed to streamline our assessment process, meaning our foster carers can begin changing children’s lives sooner.
Our Fast Track Assessment reduces the amount of time it takes us to process applications and approve our foster carers, all without compromising the thoroughness of our assessment.
Under the Fast Track Assessment, the time it takes to approve foster carers is reduced to around 16 weeks – shaving off 8 weeks from our standard assessment and approval timeframe.
How have we made Fostering Assessments quicker?
Our Fast Track Assessments comprise various factors to make the application process quicker – all without cutting corners or compromising the safety and wellbeing of our children.
Fast Track Assessment makes the most of our applicants who have greater flexibility and free time available to dedicate to the assessment process. This increased availability means that meetings that would have likely been spread over a few weeks in our standard assessment can take place in a condensed time frame – running over the course of a few days.
Thanks to the new technology and online and virtual platforms, the Fast Track Assessment also gives prospective foster carers greater accessibility and flexibility when it comes to assessment meetings, training and other fostering-related opportunities. Blending face-to-face visits with virtual meetings helps us make the most of the time available, allowing for a prompter assessment and approval turn around.
Rest assured, the preparation and support our Fast Track Assessment applicants receive is just as robust as our standard assessment applicants. We want to ensure all our prospective foster carers feel part of the Compass Fostering community from the very beginning.
What about checks and references?
As always, the safety and wellbeing of our children remains our top priority. Our Fast Track Assessment process is the same as our standard assessment process, just faster – meaning it contains the same rigorous checks and referencing procedure we use for all our applicants.
Our Fast Track assessment has the same procedures in place, meeting all necessary government regulations and National Minimum Standards – alongside our own high-quality standards for care.
Who is suitable for a Fast Track Assessment?
To meet the needs of foster children throughout the UK, we hope to use the Fast Track Assessment wherever possible when it comes to new applicants.
There are a few criteria we ask our applicants to meet when opting for the Fast Track Assessment. We ask that you:
- Have plenty of free time to dedicate to the assessment process
- Have flexibility in your daily and weekly routine to accommodate various meetings and training sessions
- Are eager to begin fostering as soon as you are approved
- Have a spare bedroom available that is suitable for a young person to live in
- Are over the age of 21 years old
We understand that not everyone will be suitable to fast track due to various personal circumstances. There may be some factors about your background or circumstances that make it impossible to fast track your assessment, but that doesn’t mean you won’t be suitable for our standard assessment.
Regardless of whether you decide to follow our standard assessment or our Fast Track assessment, our average approval time will always be within 6 months from making your initial enquiry. We know that each of our foster carers and applicants are different and will work at whatever pace suits you and your circumstances.