DSW Candidate – AmyLynne Hicks, LCSW, 1:00 PM – 2:15PM


Virtual Showcase of DSW Scholars 2024 Event!

Improving Reunification Rates in Foster Care: Promoting Connections by Adapting Family Systems Theory

DSW Candidate – AmyLynne Hicks, LCSW

Monday, April 22, 2024

1:00 PM – 2:15 PM Eastern Time Zone

Credit Hours: 1.0


Improving Reunification Rates in Foster Care: Promoting Connections by Adapting Family Systems Theory

When a child is placed in foster care, their discharge plan is often reunification with biological family members. Unfortunately, reunification is often unsuccessful, resulting in the child being placed back in foster care. Successful reunifications often include interventions that encourage connection between biological and foster families, including trial home visits and increased aftercare services.

Family systems theory can help social workers conceptualize reunification efforts, but there are problems with applying family systems theory when a child is in foster care. The child is split between two different family systems, which can result in difficulty transitioning from their foster family to their biological family.

This presentation discusses adapting family systems theory to view biological and foster families as members of one multi-family system rather than separate family systems and offers suggestions for interventions to incorporate with family members and social workers to increase connection and improve reunification rates.

Learning Objectives:

  1. Identify factors and themes present in successful and failed reunifications.
  2. Define family systems theory and identify gaps in applying the theory to child welfare involved populations.
  3. Understand adaptations for family systems theory to better fit child welfare-involved populations and an intervention to utilize adapted family systems theory in child welfare practice.

Delivery Method: Live Interactive Training via Zoom Video Conferencing

Credit Hours: 1.0 (ACE)

Target Audience: This conference is intended for social workers and students.

Accreditation: University of Kentucky College of Social Work, Provider # 1377, is approved as an ACE provider to offer social work continuing education by the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB) Approved Continuing Education (ACE) program. Regulatory boards are the final authority on courses accepted for continuing education credit. ACE provider approval period: 9/29/22-9/29/25. Social workers participating in this conference will receive up to 15 general continuing education credits.

Claiming CE Credit: Instructions for claiming CE credit will be disseminated at the beginning of each session.

Questions: If you have any questions regarding CE credit or to report a grievance, please contact Melissa Whitaker at melissa.whitaker@uky.edu. For technical assistance, please contact lmshelp@uky.edu.