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Extension > Family > Parents Forever™ > For Professionals > Frequently Asked Questions by Professionals

For Professionals

Frequently Asked Questions by Professionals

The following are questions that we frequently get asked from professionals. If you have a unique situation, or a question that you don't see answered on this page, Contact Us.

Are there pre-requisites for using the Parents Forever™ curriculum?

Historically, purchasing the curriculum gave you the right to teach the program in your community. With the 2014 revision, things have changed! In order to be an authorized provider for Parents Forever™ you need to:

  • Attend the free Parents Forever™ Introductory Webinar.
  • Attend the Parents Forever™ Facilitator Training.
  • Sign an agreement documenting expectations and available support.
  • Complete follow-up activities during the year to renew your authorized provider status for the next year.

For more information on this new system, sign up for the upcoming Parents Forever™ Introductory Webinar.

What does it mean to be an “authorized provider”?

When we role out the new Parents Forever™ system in 2014, we are setting up a system of expectations for facilitators/host organizations, as well as a comprehensive body of resources and support that is available to facilitators/host organizations. Those facilitators who complete all of the prerequisites are called “authorized providers.” Only authorized providers will have the ability to purchase access to the revised curriculum, gain access to the Parents Forever Facilitator Website, and gain access to the full range of resources and support available. For more information on this new system, attend the free Parents Forever™ Introductory Webinar.

What happens if I don’t become an authorized provider? Can I still teach Parents Forever™?

We are aiming for all programs that teach Parents Forever™ having the effect with families and communities that is intended with the curriculum. By becoming an authorized provider, you will also gain access to the new curriculum, additional resources, ongoing professional development opportunities, community of practice, ongoing technical support for your program, and more.

Starting January 2015, we will no longer be listing programs who have not gone through the authorized provider process on our website. Specific judges and/or courts may choose to only allow participants to attend “authorized provider” led courses, as we can only guarantee the quality of these courses. We will be contacting programs who do not go through the authorized provider process to discuss the next steps.

I have the old curriculum but hear that a new version is coming out. How do I get a copy of this new version?

Only authorized providers will have the ability to purchase access to the revised curriculum. Once you have completed the final required training and an agreement has been signed, you would be able to gain access to the latest version.

I have the old curriculum. Do I need to purchase the new one?

Unless you have purchased the curriculum between January 2013 and September 2014, you would need to repurchase the curriculum. The latest 2014 version of the curriculum is a completely new curriculum and will be available in electronic format on the Parents Forever Facilitator Website. You would only be able to purchase it (and the related website) after becoming an authorized provider. This purchase would be a one-time cost, giving you access to future version, and would give you access to additional resources and support along with access to the curriculum. It is well worth the cost!

How much does the new curriculum cost?

The latest 2014 version of the curriculum is a completely new curriculum and will be available in electronic format on the Parents Forever Facilitator Website. You can only purchase access to the curriculum (aka website) after becoming an authorized provider. The cost is $299 for the first two facilitators of an organization, and $20 for each additional facilitator from that same organization.

Do I need to be trained to offer Parents Forever™ classes?

Yes, anyone who teaches more than 1 hour of class needs to attend both the Parents Forever™ Introductory Webinar and Parents Forever™ Facilitator Training before teaching.

Do I need to work with my local court(s) to establish and/or run a Parents Forever™ program?

It is in your benefit to work closely with your local court(s). They will be able to help make referrals to your program. By staying connected to your local court(s) you will also ensure that your program is acceptable to them for meeting the court order.

Do I need to get Supreme Court approval for our local Parents Forever™ program?

For classes in Minnesota, the Parents Forever™ program is already approved by the Minnesota Supreme Court. If you use the curriculum as it is and ensure that your program meets all 25 minimum standards and is at least 8 hours long, you do not need to contact the Supreme Court. When you go through the authorized provider process described above, this will also help ensure to the courts that you are meeting the program requirements.

For classes outside of Minnesota, you will need to explore any requirements for your state. We can work with you to submit Parents Forever™ to your supreme court as needed.

Do we need to teach Parents Forever™ in a female/male team?

From our experience, you will want a minimum of two facilitators for a course of this length. While some programs prefer to have at least one female and one male facilitator, it is more important to have two qualified facilitators! It is important that your facilitators do have formalized training, experience, and proven sensitivity in working with families who have experienced a family transition like divorce or separation. We provide more information about facilitator requirements in the Parents Forever™ Introductory Webinar.

Does our program need to teach all topics?

In Minnesota, in order to meet the minimum standards required by Statute 518.157, you will need to teach the curriculum as written. The full 8-hour version of the curriculum is written to cover all of the minimum standards as well as other information that participants, facilitators, and the research have shown is key to a course like this.

If you are teaching outside Minnesota, you will note that we are working on drafting a 4-hour and 6-hour version of the curriculum for other states who have different (aka lesser) requirements for this type of education. If you would like to stay connected with us about this issue, Contact Us and we’ll add you to our “out-of-state” list.

I keep hearing about the “minimum standards.” What does that mean for my local program?

When the Parent Education legislation went into effect, there were “standards” identified by the Minnesota Supreme Court that needed to be in all approved programs in the state of Minnesota. Parents Forever™ meets all 25 of the minimum standards. See more about the minimum standards.

I know that Parents Forever™ is now offered to parents through an online course. Will that curb our local program’s chances of success?

We started to offer the Parents Forever™: Online Course for Parents to better meet the needs of parents in Minnesota. While there are many vibrant, local in-person programs offered in the state, the reality is that many programs only offer classes a couple of times a year. Also, given the size of some Minnesota counties, some parents need to travel hours just to attend in-person trainings. Our hope is that by offering an online version of the course, parents who historically have had a hard time getting their required classes completed now have another option to do so. In-person programs can view the online course as an alternative for those parents that need a class when no in-person class is being offered. As online courses are not appropriate for all people, we do not see the online course as replacing the value of the in-person course. We will continue to encourage parents to both options on our website.

How do we get our local Parents Forever™ program’s information listed on the Parents Forever™ website?

We currently list information on local program in Minnesota on our Find an Upcoming In-Person Class web page. Starting January 2015, we will only list programs on our website if they have gone through the process of becoming an authorized provider. If you would like to add or revise the contact information for your state or add information about your upcoming classes, send an email to parentsforever@umn.edu.

I want to offer the Parents Forever™ program in a state other than Minnesota. Does Parents Forever™ meet the requirements of my state?

In general, Minnesota has some of the most stringent standards in terms of key topics to be taught and hours of education to be required. Because Parents Forever™ has been tailored to meet these high standards, it often meets the divorce education requirements of other states. Parents Forever™ is currently being taught in several states besides Minnesota.

To ensure that Parents Forever™ meets your state’s requirements, check with your state’s Supreme Court. If they are not familiar with Parents Forever™, share the minimum standards that are covered in our program and mention that our program is designed to be taught in a minimum of 8 hours of education. Also, note that we are working on drafting a 4-hour and 6-hour version of the curriculum for other states who have different (aka lesser) requirements for this type of education. If you would like to stay connected with us about this issue, Contact Us and we’ll add you to our “out-of-state” list.

What materials need to be provided to parents?

All parents who attend a Parents Forever™ class need to receive the Parents Forever™ Parent Handbook. The cost for this booklet should be part of the registration fee and not an added expense to participants. (Participants receive an electronic version of this publication through the Parents Forever™ Online Course for Parents. See the Products Order Form to order the Parent Handbook and other Parents Forever™ resources.

I bought one Parents Forever™ Parent Handbook. Can’t I just make copies for the parents in my class?

All Parents Forever™ resources, including the Parents Forever™ Parent Handbook, are copyrighted by the Regents of the University of Minnesota. The Parent Handbook is intended as long-term resource for parents – a resource that they utilize and refer to again and again over the upcoming years of the family transition process. Photocopies are often not a consistent quality and, compared with a nice printed book, are usually not something most people hang onto for long periods of time. For these reasons, we do not allow anyone to photocopy the Parent handbook; copies must be purchased. See the Products Order Form to order the Parent Handbook and other Parents Forever™ resources.

What should we charge for our local Parents Forever™ class?

The fee for parents will depend on your own situation and costs that you incur in the delivery of the program. In-person Parents Forever™ programs in Minnesota vary from $25 to $105, with the average fee being $60. Our Parents Forever™ Online Course for Parents is being offered for $89. In-person programs must offer scholarships or sliding fee scales and waive fees when IFPs are involved. (An IFP is a court process which waives the fees for court related procedures.)

I’ve been trained to teach Parents Forever™. How do I stay connected to new developments with the program?

There are three main ways to stay connected.

  • After you have become an authorized provider, you will gain access to the Parents Forever™ Facilitator Website. This website will contain up-to-date information about the developments of the program.
  • Also, we maintain a listserv for Parents Forever™ facilitators and coordinators. In addition to posting updates on our website, we send email updates to this listserv. To join the listserv, complete the online form.
  • Lastly, as new and revised resources become available for the public, we will feature them on the Parents Forever™ website. Check the site regularly to see updates.

Have more questions? Contact Us!

Related Resource

How to Offer Parents Forever™ In-Person to Your Community — Familiarize yourself with the process for becoming an "authorized provider" of the program, and for engaging with us as a Parents Forever™ partner.

Does Parents Forever™ Work? — Find out what people are saying about the impact of this program.

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