Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Official websites use .gov
A .gov website belongs to an official government organization in the United States.

Secure .gov websites use HTTPS
A lock () or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .gov website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

November 2006Vol. 7, No. 8Child Welfare Outcomes 2003

Child Welfare Outcomes 2003: Annual Report to Congress provides information on the performance of each State, Washington, DC, and Puerto Rico in seven areas or "outcomes" for children and families during the year 2003. Data on child abuse, neglect, reunification, and adoption were used to rate each State in the following areas:

  • Outcome 1—Reduction in the recurrence of child abuse and/or neglect
  • Outcome 2—Reduction in the incidence of child abuse and/or neglect in foster care
  • Outcome 3—Increase in permanency for children in foster care
  • Outcome 4—Reduction in the time in foster care to reunification without increasing re-entry
  • Outcome 5—Reduction in the time in foster care to adoption
  • Outcome 6—Increase in placement stability
  • Outcome 7—Reduction in placements of young children in group homes or institutions

Notable improvements occurred in 2003, including the reduction of maltreatment of children in foster care, increases in achieving adoptions within 24 months of children entering foster care, placement of young children in foster families rather than institutions, and achievement of reunification within 12 months of children entering foster care. Challenges continued in a number of areas, especially the achievement of permanency for older children and youth.

To read Child Welfare Outcomes 2003, visit the Children's Bureau website:

This publication can be ordered through Child Welfare Information Gateway: