test_contentimg

Adoption facts and figures

England (these National Statistics relate to looked after children in England for the year ending 31st March 2015)

Looked after children

There were 69,540 looked after children on 31 March 2015, compared to 68,800 in 2014.

Of these:

  • The majority of looked after children (61%) are looked after by the state due to abuse or neglect.
  • The majority of children (73%) are from a White British background.
  • 52,050 (75%) were in a foster placement.
  • 5% of the children looked after were under the age of 1.

Adoptions from Care

There were 5,330 looked after children adopted during the year ending 31 March 2015, an increase of 5% between 2014 and 2015.

Gender

53% (2,800) of children adopted during the year ending 31st March 2015 were boys and 47% (2,530) were girls.

Age

  • 4% (230) of children adopted during the year ending 31st March 2015 were under 1 year old.
  • 76% (4,050) were aged between 1 and 4 years old.
  • 19% (990) were aged between 5 and 9 years old.
  • 1% (60) were aged between 10 and 15 years old.
  • None were aged 16 and over (to nearest 10).

Ethnicity

  • 83% (4,400) of looked after children adopted during the year ending 31st March 2015 were white.
  • 11% (580) were of mixed racial background.
  • 2% (120) were Black or Black British.
  • 2% (90) were Asian or Asian British.
  • 1% (50) were from other ethnic groups.
  • 2% (100) were other (refused or information not yet available).

Siblings adopted

1,930 (36%) of the 5,330 children adopted during 2014-15 were part of a sibling group.

Adoption Register for England and Wales

A total of 282 children were matched between 1 April 2014 and 31 March 2015.

The Independent Review Mechanism (IRM)

An independent body set up by the Department for Education and Skills, adoption applicants in England can apply to the IRM for a review of their adoption agency's determination not to approve them as adopters or to withdraw their approval.

Between 1 April 2013 and 31 March 2014, the IRM accepted 16 applications from adoption cases. The IRM made a positive recommendation in eight (50%) of the adoption cases, and in six of these the agency agreed with the IRM.

Adoption reviews overwhelmingly concerned issues of suitability arising from assessment.

Sources:

Northern Ireland (these National Statistics relate to looked after children in Northern Ireland for the year ending 31st March 2015)

Looked after children

2,875 children were looked after on 31st March 2015.

52% (1,498) of children looked after on 31st March 2015 were boys and 48% (1,377) were girls.

Age

  • 4% of children (112) looked after on 31st March 2015 were under 1 year old,
  • 20% (581) were between 1 and 4 years old.
  • 34% (958) were aged between 5 and 11 years old.
  • 24% (693) were aged between 12 and 15 years old.
  • 18% (530) were aged 16 and over.

Adoptions from Care

  • 89 looked after children were adopted in the year ending 31st March 2014 (up from 88 in 2012-13 and 60 in 2011-12).
  • 53% (47) of children adopted during the year ending 31st March 2014 were boys and 47% (42) were girls.
  • The average age at adoption was 4 years 4 months (down from 5 years in 2012).

Sources:

http://www.dhsspsni.gov.uk/

Scotland (these National Statistics relate to looked after children in Scotland on 31st July 2014)

Looked after children

15,580 children were in the care of local authorities on 31st July 2014 (a 3% decrease since 2013).

Of the children looked after in 2014:

  • 27% (4,144) were looked after at home and 36% (5,533) were looked after by foster carers.
  • The rates of looked after children per 10,000 under 18 years is 150.
  • 53% (8,285) of children looked after were boys and 47% (7,295) were girls.

Age

  • 3% (434) of children looked after on 31st July 2014 were under 1 year old. 
  • 18% (2,821) were aged between 1 and 4 years old.
  • 37% (5,818) were aged between 5 and 11 years old.
  • 30% (4,629) were aged between 12 and 15 years old.
  • 11% (1,647) were aged 16 or 17.
  • 1.5% (231) were aged between 18 and 21 years old.

Ethnicity

  • 89.5% (13,950) of children looked after on 31st July 2014 were white.
  • 1.5% (235) were of mixed ethnicity.
  • 0.5% (81) were Asian, Asian Scottish or Asian British.
  • 0.6% (95) were Black, Black Scottish or Black British.
  • 0.5% (73) were from other ethnic groups.
  • 7.4% (1,146) were of unknown ethnic origin.

Adoptions from Care

  • 337 children who ceased to be looked after in the year ending July 2014 were adopted.

Registered Adoptions

  • 373 adoptions of children by non-relatives were registered during 2013*.
  • 489 adoptions of children were registered in 2013 (includes step-parent (20%/ 97), grandparent(s) (<1%/ 4), other relation(s) (3%/ 15) and no relation (76%/ 333) adoptions)*.
  • 74% (364) of adoptions registered in 2013 were by couples and 26% (125) by single adopters.
  • 3% (14) of all adoptions registered in 2013 were by same sex couples.

*Statistics on adoptions in Scotland are provided by the Registrar General for Scotland, which registers adoptions under the Adoption and Children (Scotland) Act 2007 (previously the Adoption of Children (Scotland) Act 1930).

Sources:

Children's Social Work Statistics 2013-2014 (Scotland but some data in additional tables covers all countries)
www.scotland.gov.uk

Vital Events Reference Tables 2013: Section 2: Adoptions and Re-registrations
www.gro-scotland.gov.uk

Wales (these National Statistics relate to looked after children in Wales for the year ending 31st March 2015)

Looked after children

A total of 5,617 children were in the care of local authorities on 31st March 2015, down by 128 (2.2%) on the previous year. 

  • 5% (290) of children looked after on 31st March 2015 were under 1 year old.
  • 18% (995) were aged between 1 and 4 years old.
  • 24% (1,350) were aged between 5 and 9 years old.
  • 36% (2,040) were aged between 10 and 15 years old.
  • 17% (940) were aged 16 and over.

54% (3,020) of children looked after were boys and 46% (2,595) were girls.

Adoptions from Care

385 children were adopted from care during the year ending 31st March 2015 compared to 345 in 2014 (a 10% increase) and 329 in 2013 (a 15% increase to 2015).

48% (185) of children adopted during the year ending 31st March 2014 were boys and 51% (195) were girls.

Age 

The average age at adoption in the year ending 31st March 2015 was 3 years 3 months.

  • *% (*) of children adopted in the year ending 31 March 2015 were under 1 year old.
  • 81% (310) were aged between 1 and 4 years old (down from 84% in 2014).
  • 18% (70) were aged between 5 and 9 years old (up from 14.5% in 2014).
  • *% (*) were aged between 10 and 15 years old.
  • *% (*) were aged 16 years and over.
  • (* = suppressed to prevent disclosure, less than 5 children).

Adopters

91% (350) of adoptions during the year ending 31st March 2015 were by couples and 8% (30) were by single adopters. 8% (30) of all adoptions during the year ending 31st March 2015 were by same sex couples.

Sources:

http://www.statswales.wales.gov.uk/