Date on Master's Thesis/Doctoral Dissertation


Document Type

Doctoral Dissertation

Degree Name

Ph. D.

Cooperating University

University of Kentucky


Social Work

Committee Chair

Barbee, Anita

Author's Keywords

Legacy children; Foster care; Adoption and Safe Families Act


Foster children--Kentucky; Children--Institutional care--Kentucky; Child welfare--Kentucky


The Adoption and Safe Families Act created specific outcomes for permanency for children in foster care. The purpose of these outcomes is to decrease the number of children in long term foster care. Seven years have passed since ASFA was signed into law. Audits completed in each state by federal reviewers have found that no state has meet ASFA's primary outcome of permanency and stability of placement for foster children. A number of foster children are still spending long periods of time in foster care. This project sought to identify barriers to permanency for a sample of Kentucky's long term foster care population. Regression analysis and path modeling were used to identify seven direct predictors and nineteen indirect post ASFA predictors of long term care for the children in this study. Number of days between case planning conferences was the strongest predictor of long term foster care. Ethnographic interviews completed with twenty current foster children gathered their perspectives regarding permanency and satisfaction with foster care post ASFA. For these children, stability of placement was the foremost concern.