Main Page
This Issue

2004 Jordan Institute
for Families

Vol. 9, No. 4
July 2004

Annotated List of Data Sources and Statistical Information about Child Welfare

North Carolina Sources

NC Division of Social Services.
Maintained by the Division's Family Support and Child Welfare Services Section, this page contains links to:

  • Index of State Automation. A listing of reports used by the Division and/or distributed to county departments of social services. Each index entry indicates, among other things, the name of each report, its purpose, and the DSS forms from which the report is generated (e.g., DSS-5094).

  • Central Registry of Abuse and Neglect Statistics. Contains data by county on the number of children investigated for abuse and neglect, as well as the number of children substantiated for abuse/neglect. Central Registry information feeds into NCANDS, a federal data system.

  • County Child Welfare Experiences Report. Offers county-specific, longitudinal data on all children entering care for the first time. This data reflects performance on certain child welfare indicators: (1) pattern of initial placements, (2) length of time in custody, (3) experiences of children placed in non-family settings, (4) placement stability, and (5) re-entry into DSS custody. Experiences reports enable counties to compare their performance on these indicators over time to the state as a whole, to counties of similar size, and to their own past performance.

  • Child Welfare Outcomes: 2001 Annual Report for North Carolina. This source, compiled by the U.S. Administration for Children and Families using point-in-time data from AFCARS, NCANDS, and other federal data sources, offers a perspective on the performance of North Carolina's child welfare system between 1998 and 2001.

  • Probability of Placement Data for Children Initially Substantiated for Abuse and Neglect. A report that links the Central Registry data (which is drawn from information entered on DSS form #5104) to data from the Child Placement and Payment system (drawn from information entered on DSS form #5094). Includes information related to the number of children with an initial substantiated abuse and/or neglect report and the likelihood they will enter DSS custody.

  • Children in Foster Care. A report that states the number of children in each North Carolina county, the number of children in foster care in each county as of June 30, 2002, and the number of children for every 1,000 children in foster care in each county.

NC Legislature. Although it does not contain child welfare data, the definitions of child abuse, neglect, and dependency found in North Carolina's legal code (Chapter 7B) can be essential for understanding other data sources.

Action for Children North Carolina--Data Page.

Prevent Child Abuse North Carolina.
Presents information from—and a critique of—North Carolina's Central Registry, as well as tips for understanding and using data.

National and Federal Sources

ACF Data and Statistics. A collection of statistics and fiscal information on child care, child support, child welfare, Head Start, refugees, and welfare. Includes welfare caseload information and other welfare statistics from 1936 to present. DHHS Agency for Children and Families.

AFCARS (Adoption and Foster Care Analysis and Reporting System). Mandated by federal legislation in 1986, this system was designed to assist in the administration of Title IV-B/E State plans. The system collects and reports to the Administration on Children and Families 65 data elements for each child in foster care and 37 data elements for each child adopted during the six-month reporting period. These include the child's demographic information, removal/placement setting indicators, circumstances associated with removal, current placement settings, most recent case plan goal, parental rights termination, foster parent data, and discharge data. Uses point-in-time data. AFCARS is a single national system that receives data in the same format from all states.

Child Trends DataBank. Information on the latest national trends and research on more than 80 key indicators of child and youth well-being.

KIDS COUNT Data Book. A product of the Annie E. Casey Foundation, this annual report profiles the performance of all 50 states relative to 10 key indicators of child well-being. In addition to the report itself, the online version of the data book offers an easy-to-use, powerful online database that enables users to generate custom graphs, maps, ranked lists, and state-by-state profiles. If they wish, users may also download the entire data set as delimited text files.

Child Welfare Information Gateway

National Data Archive on Child Abuse and Neglect. NDACAN promotes scholarly exchange among researchers in the child maltreatment field. NDACAN acquires microdata from leading researchers and national data collection efforts and makes these datasets available to the research community for secondary analysis.

NCANDS (National Child Abuse and Neglect Data System). This system promotes the collection of annual national data on child protective services from the states. Items reported include data regarding the report itself, child data, and child victim and perpetrator data. For more information about NCANDS, and for links to reports created using this data system, go to: