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Child—permanent care arrangement status, type code N[N]

Identifying and definitional attributes

Metadata item type:Help on this termData Element
Short name:Help on this termPermanent care arrangement status
METeOR identifier:Help on this term657341
Registration status:Help on this termChildren and Families, Standard 22/11/2016
Definition:Help on this term

The status of a child's care arrangement with regard to permanency, as represented by a code.

Data Element Concept:Child—permanent care arrangement status

Value domain attributes

Representational attributes

Representation class:Help on this termCode
Data type:Help on this termNumber
Format:Help on this termN[N]
Maximum character length:Help on this term2
Permissible values:Help on this term
ValueMeaning
1Reunification with birth parents
2Reunification with relatives/kin other than birth parents
3Reunification-Other/Not further specified
4Adoption
5New long-term finalised guardianship or custody order
6New third-party parental responsibility order
7Continued existing long-term finalised guardianship or custody order
8Continued existing third-party parental responsibility order
9Child did not have a permanent care arrangement during the reporting period
Supplementary values:Help on this term
99Not stated/inadequately described

Collection and usage attributes

Guide for use:Help on this term

CODE 1   Reunification with birth parent/s

Where the child will be reunified with one or both birth parents.

The Department/agency will have transferred full parental guardianship/custody of the child back to the birth parent within the 2015–16 reporting period. Only Department/agency-approved reunifications are included. This includes children who self-reunified, with subsequent endorsement by the Department/agency.

CODE 2   Reunification with relatives/kin other than birth parents

Where the child will be reunified with relatives/kin other than birth parents. The Department/agency will have transferred full parental guardianship/custody of the child back to relatives/kin within the reporting period.

CODE 3    Reunification –Other/Not further specified

Where the child was reunified with a person or persons other than their birth parents, or other relatives/kin. This category may include reunification to a former guardian (other than those specified above). This category may be used when it is known that a reunification attempt has been made, but where it is not possible to classify who a child was reunified with.

CODE 4   Adoption

An adoption order, made by a competent authority under adoption legislation, by which the adoptive parent(s) become the legal parent(s) of the child. For the purpose of this collection, only adoption orders that were finalised during the reporting period for children who were under the care of the relevant child protection department are included. The way in which an adoption is finalised depends on the procedures of the state or territory departments responsible for adoption in Australia.

Current policy and practice may limit these adoptions to known-carer adoptions (included in the ‘known child adoptions’ category for national adoptions reporting). However in some jurisdictions, local adoptions may also be included in this category (see below for further definitions).

Known-carer adoption

An adoption of a child born or permanently residing in Australia before the adoption, by a foster parent or other non-relative who has been caring for the child and has had the responsibility for making decisions about the daily care and control of the child for the relevant period (as specified by the relevant state/territory department) before the adoption.

Local adoption

An adoption of a child born or permanently residing in Australia before the adoption who are legally able to be placed for adoption but who generally have had no previous contact or relationship with the adoptive parent(s).

CODE 5   New long-term finalised guardianship or custody orders

Order involving the transfer of legal guardianship to the relevant state or territory department or non-government agency. These orders involve considerable intervention in the child’s life and that of their family, and are sought only as a last resort.

For the purpose of this collection, this category refers to long-term finalised guardianship or custody orders. ‘Long-term’ generally refers to where the order confers guardianship/custody until the child turns 18 years of age.  However, in some jurisdictions, specific time-limited orders (more than 2 years) may also be deemed to be long-term and may also be included in this category.

A guardianship order conveys responsibility for the welfare of the child to the guardian (for example, for the child’s education, health, religion, accommodation and financial matters). It does not necessarily grant the right to the daily care and control of the child, or the right to make decisions about the daily care and control of the child, which are granted under custody orders.

A custody order is generally an order that places a child in the custody of either the state or territory department responsible for child protection, or a non-government agency. It usually involves the child protection department’s being responsible for the daily care and requirements of the child, while the parent retains legal guardianship. Custody alone does not bestow any responsibility regarding the long-term welfare of the child.

CODE 6   New third-party parental responsibility order

An order transferring all duties, powers, responsibilities and authority to which parents are entitled by law to a nominated person(s) whom the court considers appropriate. The nominated person may be an individual such as a relative or an officer of the state or territory department. Third-party parental responsibility may be ordered in the event that a parent is unable to care for a child, with parental responsibility then transferred to a relative.

CODE 7   Continued existing long-term finalised guardianship or custody orders

Where a child remained on an existing long-term finalised guardianship or custody order from the previous (2014–15) reporting period.

CODE 8   Continued existing third-party parental responsibility order

Where a child remained on an existing third-party parental responsibility order from the previous (2014–15) reporting period. 

CODE 9   Child did not have a permanent care arrangement during the reporting period

Where it is known that the child was not reunified or provided with an alternative permanent care arrangement during the reporting period.

CODE 99   Not stated/inadequately described

Where it is unknown whether the child was provided with a permanent care arrangement during the reporting period.

Source and reference attributes

Submitting organisation:Help on this term

Australian Institute of Health and Welfare

Data element attributes

Collection and usage attributes

Guide for use:Help on this term

Permanency planning refers to time-limited, goal directed efforts to help maintain a child in a permanent and stable living arrangement with his or her own family, or, if that is not possible, to secure for the child a permanent living arrangement under a long-term child protection order or an adoption order.

Permanent care arrangements may include a child being returned to their parent(s); other relatives/kin, or a former guardian (reunification); adoption; or for whom alternative permanent care arrangements were provided (i.e. third-party parental responsibility orders, long-term/to age 18 orders).

There are different goals and priorities for children’s permanent care arrangements depending on their characteristics and circumstances.  While it is possible for a child to have a number of permanency options explored within the 2015–16 reporting period, this item intends to capture the most recent permanent care arrangement attained in the reporting period (i.e. on the night of 30 June 2016, or as at discharge for children who were discharged from care during 2015–16, and had not returned in less than 60 days). Codes 1–6 represent a change to a new permanent care arrangement; Codes 7–8 represent the continuation of an existing permanent care arrangement, acknowledging that there may not have been a change to the status of a permanent care arrangement within the 2015–16 reporting period. Code 9 captures those children who did not have a permanent care arrangement within the 2015–16 reporting period.

Source and reference attributes

Submitting organisation:Help on this term

 Australian Institute of Health and Welfare

Origin:Help on this term

Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) 2016. Child protection national minimum data set, data collection manual 2015–16. Canberra: AIHW.

Relational attributes

Implementation in Data Set Specifications:Help on this term
All attributes +

National out-of-home care standards (NOOHCS) file cluster Children and Families, Superseded 20/04/2018

DSS specific attributes +

National out-of-home care standards (NOOHCS) file cluster Children and Families, Standard 20/04/2018

DSS specific attributes +
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