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The Pennsylvania Code website reflects the Pennsylvania Code changes effective through 53 Pa.B. 6142 (September 30, 2023).

55 Pa. Code § 3700.63. Foster child discipline, punishment and control policy.

§ 3700.63. Foster child discipline, punishment and control policy.

 (a)  Discipline.

   (1)  Foster children shall be directed with techniques that stress praise and encouragement.

   (2)  Foster children may not be subjected to verbal abuse, derogatory remarks or threats of removal from the foster home.

 (b)  Punishment. The following forms of punishment are prohibited:

   (1)  Abusive discipline practices.

   (2)  Physical punishment inflicted upon the body.

   (3)  Punishment for bedwetting or actions related to toilet training.

   (4)  Delegation of punishment to another child.

   (5)  Denial of meals, clothing or shelter.

   (6)  Denial of elements of the service plan or ISP.

   (7)  Denial of communication with, or visits by, the child’s family.

   (8)  Assignment of physically strenuous exercise or work solely as punishment.

 (c)  Control. Passive physical restraint is the only allowable method of restraining a child.


   The provisions of this §  3700.63 amended under Articles II, VII, IX and X of the Public Welfare Code (62 P. S. § §  201—211, 701—774, 901—922 and 1001—1080).


   The provisions of this §  3700.63 amended January 23, 1987, effective January 24, 1987, 17 Pa.B. 392. Immediately preceding text appears at serial page (98001).

Notes of Decisions

   Home Inspections

   The Department regulations addressing the inspection and approval of the home custodian reach concerns ranging from the assurances that the drinking water is potable, §  3700.67(h) (relating to safety requirements), and that the intended custodian is physically able to care for the child, §  3700.63 (relating to foster parent discipline policy), to the assurance that the custodian is apprised of the approved policy with regard to the discipline of the child, §  3700.63. In re Lowry, 484 A.2d 383 (Pa. 1984).


   Department of Public Welfare regulation permitting foster parents to use ‘‘passive physical restraint’’ as a method of restraining a child and prohibiting foster parents from the use of any ‘‘physical punishment inflicted upon the body’’ binds all county children and youth agencies, but does not bind In re D. T., 35 D.&C. 4th 454 (1998).

   Evidence that foster parents had placed pepper on the tongue of a foster child who refused to eat; tied a child to a bed; locked a child in a bedroom and strapped a child to a car seat located inside the home was sufficient to demonstrate that more than physical passive restraint was imposed, which was conduct prohibited by the regulations. Martz v. Department of Public Welfare, 536 A.2d 496 (Pa. Cmwlth. 1988).

Cross References

   This section cited in 55 Pa. Code §  3700.36 (relating to discipline policies); 55 Pa. Code §  3700.69 (relating to annual reevaluation); and 55 Pa. Code §  3700.70 (relating to temporary and provisional approvals of foster families).

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