Ontario Looking After Children (OnLAC)


This training program has been designed to familiarize CAS staff, residential caregiver staff and resource parents in the theory, principles and values which inform the child centred approach to child welfare practice. The aim of the program is to promote resilience while using a developmental focused approach in order to improve outcomes for children in care. The life conditions and experiences that contribute to positive outcomes for youth are explored, and the ways in which the data from AARs can be used to improve outcomes for children in care are highlighted. The curriculum explores the following six core concepts of Looking after Children:



  • Resiliency and a strengths based focus
  • Positive/authoritative parenting
  • The seven critical developmental dimensions assessed in the OnLAC Model
  • The power of positive expectations
  • Outcomes for children which are measured
  • Assessment which leads to action



Learning Objectives

As a result of their participation in this training, participants will be able to:


  • State the aim and purpose of OnLAC
  • Summarize the history and development of OnLAC
  • List life conditions and experiences that contribute to positive outcomes for youth
  • State the shared, desired developmental goal for every child in care
  • Recognize how the AAR data can be used to improve outcomes for children in care
  • Define the developmental model
  • Contrast the developmental model and the medical model
  • List the benefits of the developmental model for planning for children
  • Relate at least one story about a child whose growth and development has exceeded initial expectations
  • Define resilience and the types of resilience
  • List personal attributes related to resilience
  • Identify how adversity impacts a child and how intervention can enhance resilience
  • Give examples of how the AAR monitors a child’s progress/resilience
  • Define positive/authoritative parenting
  • Articulate the role of a parent according to type of setting for the child
  • Identify their role in corporate parenting
  • Identify what is in the AAR, name the seven dimensions and begin to develop plans of care that relate to each dimension
  • Participate in an interview with a youth using the AAR
  • Articulate the role of the residential caregiver in completing the AAR
  • Locate the asset profile and know how to complete that section of the AAR
  • Explain the impact of the expectations of others on children and youth
  • Define stereotypes, diagnosis and prognosis
  • Explain the possible impacts of stereotypes, diagnoses and labels on children and youth
  • State the importance of an ambitious life goal for children and youth in care
  • Prepare a Plan of Care with goals, objectives, tasks, time lines and assigned responsibilities
  • Design goals and objectives that are observable and measurable
  • Describe the National Longitudinal Survey of Children and Youth (NLSCY)
  • Explain how OnLAC and the NLSCY can be used for benchmarking organizational progress
  • State why outcome measurement is critical at the individual and organizational levels
  • Describe how aggregate data can be used to benefit children in care




The competencies for OnLAC training are organized by section, as listed below.

At the completion of this training, participants will be able to:


Introduction to Ontario Looking After Children (OnLAC)


  • Summarize the historical context of Looking After Children
  • Articulate the aim and purpose of OnLAC
  • Identify the current common outcomes of children in care
  • Articulate the evidence supporting the effectiveness of OnLAC
  • Understand that OnLAC is a strengths based approach to providing services to children in care
  • Indicate how the AAR information can be used as data in decision making



A Developmental Model for Children and Youth in Care


  • Understand the developmental model
  • Demonstrate ways to use the developmental model in placement
  • Articulate the seven assumptions of the developmental model
  • Describe the developmental trajectories and their desired outcome



Resilience and Positive Parenting


  • Understand the key concepts of resilience and the importance for all children
  • Identify examples of adversity and the responses to it
  • Articulate the concept of promoting resilience
  • Explain how resilience is structured into the AAR
  • Understand and promote positive / authoritative parenting in relation to the development of resilience
  • Explain the role of “parent” in a residential care setting



Using the AAR and the Seven Developmental Dimensions


  • Understand the concept of corporate parenting
  • Identify the seven developmental dimensions in the AAR and understand how planning can be implemented in each dimension
  • Relate how the interview and discussion process occurs using the AAR
  • Identify the residential caregiver role in the completion of the AAR
  • Explain the asset profile and how to enhance assets for young people in care



The Power of Positive Expectations


  • Discuss the impact of expectations held by self or others on children’s outcomes
  • Explain the power of believing in yourself and its relationship to self-efficacy
  • Articulate and plan for the use of setting high expectations
  • Understand that setting high expectations can promote surprising growth and development



Developing the Plan of Care


  • Identify the clinical and legislative purpose of the child’s Plan of Care
  • Understand the difference between goals and objectives in a Plan of Care
  • Use the AAR information to create the child’s Plan of Care
  • Incorporate the child’s life goal in the Plan of Care
  • Explain how to involve the youth in the creation of his/her Plan of Care



Using the AAR Data to Improve Outcomes


  • Explain the benefits of the OnLAC AAR data for the child, caregiver and worker
  • Identify the benefits of the OnLAC AAR data for supervisory use
  • Articulate the benefits of the OnLAC aggregated AAR data for managerial decision making
  • Describe how OnLAC AAR data can assist an agency and the province to set priorities for the children in its care






Total Duration

2 days