Sociological Analysis

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Children and foster care

February 13th, 2011 · 4 Comments

The research topic I’ve chosen is children in foster care. The main questions I ask is, what is the main reason children are placed in foster care and how does this affect their performance in society? This topic is very interesting to me because I believe the children’s up bringing has a lot to do with the way they learn to interact with other people. When we are children we are taught to function in the society we are in, and although all the people that surround us help mold us into the adults we become, the most influential people are our parents or caregivers. I believe the main causal factor for children being placed in foster care is abuse or neglect by their parents. For these reasons many children end up in the hands of other people trusting that they will help and rightly mold them into functional adults.

Jennyfer Vasco

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4 responses so far ↓

  • 1    Prof. Hala // Feb 19, 2011 at 11:16 am

    Good topic. You suggest you’d like to research foster care (in the US, I’m assuming), both it terms of causes and effects on children. It’s helpful to be thinking about your research problem in this general way at this stage, but as you move to the proposal stage, you will likely choose to explore one aspect or the other — causes or effects. At this stage, I suggest doing some background research and thinking about the different possible reasons children are placed in the foster system and the different possible effects it will have on their “performance.” Also consider the different kinds of “performance” that may be relevant.

    The “Child Welfare Information Gateway” (in Administration for Children & Families, at the US Dept of Health & Human Services) has a useful set of foster care statistics and plenty of other resources.

    Here are the Key Findings from their latest factsheet:

    * On September 30, 2008, there were an estimated 463,000 children in foster care. (See Exhibit 1.)
    * Almost a quarter (24 percent) were in relative homes, and nearly half (47 percent) were in nonrelative foster family homes. (See Exhibit 2.)
    * Almost half (49 percent) had a case goal of reunification with their families.
    * The majority of children left the system to be reunited with their families (52 percent). (See Exhibit 3.)
    * Close to half of the children (46 percent) who left foster care in FY 2008 were in care for less than 1 year. (See Exhibit 4.)

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