Keeping the Promise: The Case for Adoption Support and Preservation.
Smith, Susan Livingston.
Donaldson Adoption Institute.
Permission to Copy
Published: March 2014
Evan B. Donaldson Adoption Institute
525 Broadway, 6th floor
New York, NY 10012
This report shares findings from a study that investigated the long-term stability of domestic adoptions from foster care through the collection of data from eight States that have some information on post-adoption stability, and through a new analysis of national AFCARS data. Findings indicate: some families face only a few challenges, but at least 40-45% of those adopting from foster care will likely require therapeutic counseling services to understand and effectively address their children's emotional and behavioral needs; adoptive parents of teens previously adopted from foster care reported that 57% received mental health services it is not yet possible to determine a valid rate of foster care re-entry; very few adoptees return to the child welfare system before age 10; when comparing adopted children who re-enter the system to all other children in care, adopted youth are 3½ times more likely to be placed in non-family settings than are other foster children; 36% of adopted children who re-entered and then exited care were reunified with their adoptive families and 34% experienced adoption dissolutions; approximately 10% of youth adopted from foster care re-enter care at some point; governmental costs of adoption instability are extremely high; and the human toll is immeasurable for families who continue to struggle or experience the breakdown of their adoptions. Recommendations are made for providing adoption support and preservation services. Numerous references.
foster children; foster adoption; adopted children; emotional problems; behavior problems; reentry; placement disruption; placement stability; adoption dissolution; data analysis