Child Services

Child Protection Services

Thank you for your interest in learning more about the child protection services provided for families in Summit County, Ohio. We applaud you for your willingness to want to make a difference in the lives of children.

Every day, more and more children come to the attention of Summit County Children Services (SCCS) because of child abuse and neglect concerns. This situation has been exasperated for the last several years by the opioid crisis.

Through our 24-hour child abuse and neglect hotline (330-434-5437), Ohio’s Safe Haven for Newborns law, kinship care, foster care, foster-to-adopt opportunities and accompanying family support and community outreach programs, SCCS strives to provide comprehensive child protection services for the residents of Summit County.

Child Protection Services Process

A child suspected of being the victim of child abuse or neglect typically comes to the attention of SCCS through a call to our 24-hour child abuse and neglect hotline by a mandated reporter, concerned relative or community member.

After a thorough assessment process, agency social workers determine if a child will be safe by remaining in his/her home. Sometimes situations are such that the child will not be safe, and he/she must be placed in the agency’s temporary custody. If no relative is available to care for the child, he/she is then placed with a foster family. It is critical that we have enough foster and foster-to-adopt families to temporarily and permanently care for children.

How to Become a Foster or Adoptive Parent

After reviewing the information on our website, you are encouraged to sign-up to attend one of our monthly information meetings. At the meeting, you will learn more about the foster care and adoption process, the kinds of supportive services available to families and about the children in our care.

The best place for a child is in a family. Why not your family?

Foster Care & Adoption Pre-Service Training, Ongoing Certification

Pre-service training is required for all foster/adoptive applicants who wish to become caregivers for SCCS. This 39-hour training program covers such topics as:

  • The effects of child abuse and neglect on child development;
  • Attachment, separation and placement;
  • Managing behavior;
  • Preventing and de-escalating crises;
  • Cultural issues in placement
  • And more.

Additionally, once an individual is licensed as a foster parent, he/she is required to complete a minimum of 40 hours of continuing training during each two-year certification period. Continued training will consist of courses that a foster caregiver must complete in accordance with the caregiver’s written needs assessment and continuing training plan. SCCS offers Foster Parent Training Homework that can be applied to the 40-hour continuing education requirement.

Learn more about SCCS child protection services and how to become a foster care or foster-to-adopt parent: