Assessment focuses on the parents/caregivers understanding of mokopuna development and behaviour and they use this information in relation to their own mokopuna or the mokopuna or the children in their care.
- Where do they get their knowledge about parenting from?
- What impact have their own experiences had on their current parenting knowledge?
- what did they appreciate about what their parents did for them?
- what memories do they have from their family?
- what are some of the good things they would like to repeat in their family?
- what are aspects they do not want to repeat?
- what kind of parent would they like to be?
- what are some of the things they would like to do differently?
- What understanding do they have of the needs of children in general and their own child (or child in their care) in particular?
- how do they describe their child – their abilities, areas of worry, perceived as easy to care for or as a burden
- how well do they understand any special needs the child might have – disability, learning needs?
- what is naughty behaviour?
- how do you they think their child views them as a parent?
- What does good parenting look like to them?
- what do they do well?
- does the parent or caregiver consider their parenting style to be rigid or flexible?
- what discipline techniques do they use and why?
- what do they most want to change about the way they parent?
- What impacts on their ability to develop their parenting knowledge?
- are there language difficulties, lack of support or access to supports?
- can they differentiate between a time when their parenting worked and when it didn't?
- can they identify the critical differences?
10 — Good understanding of parenting and is meeting the child or young person’s emotional, social, cognitive, physical, developmental and spiritual needs effectively and consistently. Identifies and takes every opportunity to extend knowledge through a variety of means.
5 — Limited or inconsistent understanding but has demonstrated a willingness to learn and improve knowledge, in order to better meet the needs of the child or young person.
1 — Has little or no understanding of the child or young person’s particular emotional, social, cognitive, physical, developmental or spiritual needs. Has distorted and/or little knowledge about good parenting. Is unprepared for parenthood.
Subdomain: Parenting skills
The assessment focus is to examine their ability to apply what they know.
- How do they interact with the mokopuna in their care?
- love and warmth - act respectfully
- talking and listening - give clear messages about what is wanted
- guidance and understanding - explain why things are required
- limits and boundaries - provide rules about what to do
- consistency and consequences - explanations to provide predictability
- structured and secure world - anticipate difficulties and plan ahead
- How do they discipline the mokopuna – is it age and stage appropriate?
- Is there consistency in discipline with other adults providing care for the mokopuna?
- What happens when there are challenges to discipline?
- how are differences resolved?
- Are there any factors present that limit their ability to consistently apply what they know is right - mental illness, drug and alcohol use, chaotic household
Descriptors: parenting skills
10 — Demonstrates good parenting skills in all areas and is meeting the child or young person’s developmental and wellbeing needs effectively. Identifies challenges accurately and seeks help to develop skill to overcome these challenges.
5 — Has some basic skills in limited areas and is learning and gaining confidence. Requires on-going support and/or additional support when stressed. Current mental and/or physical health, substance use, or offending behaviour impacts on ability to demonstrate/apply skills consistently.
1 — Lacks basic skills and is unable or unwilling to learn the skills necessary to meet child or young person’s developmental needs effectively. Not prepared for parenthood. Doesn't know how to play with or relate to the child or young person in an age appropriate way. Current mental and/or physical health, substance use or offending behaviour impacts on ability to demonstrate/apply skills.
Subdomain: Willingness and capacity to change
The assessment focus is to examine their ability and motivation to achieve and sustain change.
- What would they like to change about their parenting if they could? How much of a gap is there between their ‘ideal’ self and their real self?
- How have they demonstrated their ability to change in the past?
- What concerns do they hold themselves and what are they doing to mitigate these concerns?
- What is their cognitive, physical or emotional capacity to make changes?
- Are they able to accept responsibility for their role in any harm inflicted on the mokopuna?
- If there is denial, to what extent is this because they lack insight and/or do not understand the concerns?
- to what extent to they understand how their behaviour affects the development of their child?
- do they blame others for their behaviour or minimise their responsibility as a parent/caregiver?
- To what extent does shame, ambivalence and lack of confidence impact their ability to accept that change is required?
Descriptors: willingness and capacity to change
10 — Highly motivated to change, seeks assistance and demonstrates determination to achieve sustainable change to meet the needs of the child or young person now and in the future. Knows where to seek help and does so when required from a variety of sources. Is flexible and has demonstrated the ability over time to change own behaviour or circumstances.
5 — Understands the seriousness of the concerns but minimises their impact on the child or young person in their care. Is beginning to understand the need to change but requires support and encouragement to keep motivated and, develop skills and networks. Knows when and how to seek help but does so inconsistently. Wants things to be better but does not know how to make that happen.
1 — Does not understand or appreciate the seriousness of the concerns. Does not perceive a need to change their behaviour or circumstances. Cannot or has not yet demonstrated the capacity, ability or insight to change and adapt own behaviour to meet the needs of the child or young person. Displays a pattern of not following through with the child or young person’s plans. Does not know how or when to seek help. Does not take responsibility for own behaviour or blames others. Hard to engage.