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What happens to foster children in later adolescence? A study and evaluation of the adjustment of thirty-one… Watson, Edwin Francis 1955

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WHAT HAPPENS TO FOSTER CHILDREN IN LATTER ADOLESCENCE? A Study and Evaluation of the Adjustment of Thirty-one Wards of the Superintendent of Child Welfare for the Province of British Columbia, who have been in Foster Care, and who reached Eighteen Years of Age During the Year January 1, 1954 — December 31» 1954# by EDWIN FRANCIS WATSON Thesis Submitted in Partial Fulfilment of the Requirements for the Degree of MASTER OF SOCIAL WORK in the School of Social Work* Accepted as conforming to the standard required for the degree of Master of Social Work School of Social Work 1955 The University of British Columbia i v ABSTRACT The"purpose of the present study i s an assessment of the per-sonal and social adjustment of older foster children and the extent to •which the present foster home program in rural B r i t i s h Columbia has fac i l i t a t e d meeting these personal and social needs. The group examined, thirty-one in number, were a l l adolescents in the care of the superin-tendent of child welfare for B r i t i s h Columbia who reached eighteen years during this year, and who were, or had recently been, legal wards of the Superintendent placed in foster homes throughout the province. The analysis undertaken involved compilation, of available factual data on the family background, including cultural and racial factors, marital status of the parents and reasons for the. breakdown of the child/s natural family. The placement experience of the children themselves i n -cludes examination of the ages of the children at the time they entered foster care, the number of foster home placements each child underwent, the intelligence, educational and employment as well as health factors. Against this factual picture of the group as a whole, assessment of per-sonal and social maturity on three levels was made against four descriptive c r i t e r i a of adjustment. The latter included* (a) the adolescent's fe e l -ings of his own worth and value as a person, (b) the ways in .which he was able to handle the r e a l i t i e s of his immediate environment, (c) his capa-city to withstand the frustrations of his daily l i v i n g , and f i n a l l y , (d) the capacity which he evidenced in forming relationships with those around him. The findings of the study indicate foster home care was a mean-ingful and constructive experience for a majority of the adolescents studies, a l l of whom had strong feelings of in f e r i o r i t y and lack of personal worth at the time they entered foster care. It was also found that often these feelings persisted into latter adolescence and hampered their growth toward responsible adulthood. A lack of successful adjust-ment was observed in a minority of cases, expecially for children admitted in early adolescence as a result of delinquent behaviour. The study adds • further point to the need for extensive research on the effectiveness of foster care in meeting the needs of foster children of a l l ages. Com-parison with a related study conducted by A»L» Langdale in 1951, suggests similar findings in the meaning which a foster care experience holds for the older adolescent, and the necessity of an intensive exploration of ways i n which the minority who have not benefitted by foster care may be assisted to a more positive personal and social adjustment in adult l i f e . i l TABLE GF CONTENTS Chapter I, The Adolescent and Foster Care Page Foster care for the adolescent. Two case studies, The Key question* "What happens to foster children as they reach latter adolescence?". Subjective criteria used in evaluating adjustment. Objective criteria used in evaluating adjustment. The setting* Reasons for the study and methods used. Possible value. ............ 1. Chapter II. The Years Before and Purine Placement Background of thirty-one adolescents. Methods of selection. Racial and cultural background. Religious background. Marital status of the parents. Age of admissions to foster care. Number of foster home placements. Length of time in foster care. Health* Intelligence. Educational achievement and employment stability* Summary* ........* 19* Chapter III* The Foundation for Adulthood An estimate of social adjustment - criteria and methods of measurement* The adolescent's feelings of worth and value about him-self* His ways of coping with realities* His capacity to endure frustration. His capacity to form relationships with other people. Comparisons. 46* Chapter 17. The Use of Foster Care Re-statement of the key question. Some findings. Limi-tations of the findings* Validity of the study* Comparisons with a similar study. The importance of evaluative researoh In services to children* •• 64* Appendices: A, Sample Information Sheet* B, Statistical Information on Family Background* C, Length of Contact between Parents and Children in Fifteen Cases involving Cultural Differences* D* Work Chart showing levels of adjustment, E, Bibliography i l l TABLES IN THE TEXT Page Table I. Number of children in Superintendent's care, eighteen years of age in 1954 .. 20, Table II. Length of contact between parents and children 23. Table III. Racial origins of parents 25. Table IV. Religion of parents 30. Table V. Marital status of parents 31. Table VI. Causes of family breakdown in the thirty-one families .... 32. Table VII. Age of thirty-one foster children at the time of admission. 34. Table VIII. Range of intelligence quotients of thirty-one children ... 40. Table IX. School grades reached by the children 41. Table X. Comparative ratings, Criteria No. 1. • 49. Table XI. Comparative Ratings, Criteria No. 2. •• 53. Table XII* Comparative ratings, Criteria No. 3* • •• 56. Table XIII. Comparative ratings, Criteria No. 4. 59. ACKNOWIEDGEMEHTS The writer wishes to acknowledge the valuable assistance of the following persons in the preparation of this study. To Miss Ruby McKay, Superintendent of Child Welfare for her stimulating interest and co-operation in the formulation of the project and her helpful comments in suggested revisions; to her staff, especially Mr* W*D, McFarland, former Placement Supervisor and Miss Jean Tinevez, in charge of records and statistics in the Child Welfare Division, Victoria, B. C.j to Miss Elizabeth Thomas, Mrs. Joan Grant and Dr. L*C. Marsh of the School of Social Work, University of British Columbia, for their patient and consistent aid; to Miss Lillian Carscadden, Family Welfare Bureau of Greater Vancouver who kindly agreed to the adapta-tion of criteria formulated in her thesis for use in the present study; to Miss N. Proven for her encourage-ment and advice throughout preparation; and to Miss Joan Ross for the typing of the study. v i i •Adolescence encompasses an extensive period of accelerated physical and psychological growth. It's onsent can be determined by observation of physical changes «.•« Clinical evidence shows that modifications of the psychological structure take place at approximately the same time as the physical changes occur* The onset of the psychological changes is not so easily determined as the physical, partially because the changes take place more gradually, but also because no accurate measuring techniques exist at present for determining changes in psychological growth patterns," And again -"Adolescence terminates physically with the establishment of the mature body structure and the mature functioning of the glands of internal secretion, particularly those directly related to the reproductive system. It terminates psychologically with the establishment of relatively consistent patterns for dealing with the internal conflicts and the demands of reality experienced by the physically mature individual," Josselyn, Irene M,,, The Adolescent and His World. Family Service Association of America, New York 16, N,Y,, 1952, p,5« WHAT HAPPENS TO FOSTER CHILDREN IN IATTER ADOLESCENCE? CHAPTER I  THE ADOLESCENT AND FOSTER HOME CARE INTRODUCTION AND FOCUS OF THE STUDY This study is concerned with the personal and social adjustment of a group of children who. for various reasons, have known removal from their own parents and home, and who have spent varying portions of their growing years within an established program of foster home care. As these children have moved from the almost complete dependency of childhood to-ward pre-adulthood years, many contrasts of their inner strengths give rise to questions in the mind of those actively engaged in a program of child care. While many of the experiences which these children have known are similar, the results in terms of personality development as they reach latter adolescence often differ dramatically. By reviewing what has, or as is sometimes the case, what has not been done for or with this group of boys and girls, an attempt has been made to assess how effectively the experience of foster care met their needs; and to what extent i t prepared them for personal satisfaction and social usefulness in their adult l i f e . The unique and varied nature of a child's response to separation from bis own family and foster home care, is clearly illustrated by the following summary of the placement record of two of the children, now adolescents, whose histories form a part of the group studied for this thesis. Rob. T.'s Case Rob, now eighteen years of age, came into the permanent care of a private child protection agency at six months of age, and was literally starving for both food and affection. He bad received sub-marginal care from his mother, an emotionally unstable, deeply unhappy young woman who was too preoccupied with seeking satisfaction for her own unmet personal needs to be able to think of her child. From the beginning* she had openly re-jected and neglected Rob, and following his removal from her care she TOS never known to enquire about his welfare. Rob remained for eight years in the first foster home in which he was placed. During these crucial years he received consistent and affec-tionate care and a sound foundation for adequate future adjustment was laid« When it was necessary for him to be replaced because of the illness of his foster parents, he was able to accept this parting knowing that the move could not be avoided and that both the foster parents and the worker were genuinely interested in his well-being. Five years later Rob moved to his third foster home in order to attend high school and has remained there ever since* Understandably, because of the deprivation he had known as a baby and the unfortunate replacement which had to be made when he was eight years old, Rob's adjustment has not been always smooth* In early adoles-cence reactivated feelings.of insecurity made it difficult for him to share the affection of his foster parents with another foster child* There were also indications that he was finding it hard to make a satisfactory adjust-ment to his masculine role when a more aggressive boy was present in his foster home. He was, however, on the whole a happy, cheerful youth* Re-sponsive to the help and interest of those near him, he gradually became more confident and comfortable with boys his own age, and he participated with enthusiasm and spontaneity in athletics and dramatics, as well as other school activities. He was genuinely liked by his fellows, his teachers, his foster parents and his social worker were a l l eager to see him have his chance* He has been able to use the resources of educational scholarships, counselling, vocational guidance and summer employment so far to help him work toward his goal* To achieve it will require persistence and consist-ent effort on his part and on the part of those helping him* Rob's story is not yet finished* It seems entirely likely at this time, however, that he will be able to make a favourable and positive contribution to some aspect of life in due course* Rob's growth thus far can be termed a "suc-cess story" in the field of child placement* Al. H.'s Case The results of foster care for Rob, as seen in the above, differ markedly to Al* Born to immature parents in England, Al knew some of the same fears and sense of loss as Rob* His mother was known to be promis-cuous and his father irresponsible* Both of them drank heavily, quar-relled frequently and seriously neglected Al and his younger brother and sister* Finally, his father deserted the family and his mother was arrested for habitual prostitution* Through this period, which lasted until Al wasT five, he knew physical and affectional deprivation of a severe nature* For him and his brother and sister there followed several years in an orphanage in England* Finally, at nine years of age Al was brought to British Columbia by a child immigration scheme and his insti-tutional life continued* By this time he was a bewildered, damaged boy who had little conception of what his past life bad meant or why things had turned out so disastrously for him* His experiences had made him suspicions, resentful, and unbelieving toward the world around him* At fifteen years of age Al left the institution and was placed in a foster home* Unfortunately, he was ill-prepared for what he might expect in family lif e , and as a result, the move placed new and heavy demands upon his already burdened self* Al could not believe anyone really cared about him as a person* During several years after removal from the Institution, he became involved in various acts of hostility which brought him before the Juvenile Courts* It was apparent that he was feeling with great sensitivity the effects of, the cruel, and to him unexplainable upheavals he had known* He continued in extreme confusion and conflict about himself, his own family and his own tentative place in the world* The understanding of his foster parents, his social worker, his teachers and the Courts, was insufficient to hold the dam of hostility which was mounting* Almost with a sense of destiny, Al reached out for the punishment which somehow seemed necessary for him to continue living* Eventually, a severe sentence for theft seemed to enable him to let loose some of his accumulated anger and resentment and his characteristically aggressive and hostile defenses seemed at last to break* At this time, a male social worker was assigned the case and was able to help Al live in reasonable peace with himself and society* The process in itself is by no means complete, however, and at this point, it is Impossible to estimate if Al will be able to meet the continuing exigencies of daily living* There is hope that he may find a constructive way of expressing his deep personal needs, but the total pattern of this boy's life experiences does not promise a lasting or permanently favourable prognosis* Al must be considered a foster child whose internal forces and drives and external adjustment to society is most marginal* His is less than a "success story."* THE KEY QUESTION 4 The length of time spent in foster care by Rob and Al varied con-siderably and this fact in itself undoubtedly had an important effect upon their adjustment in adolescence* There were other factors in their individ-ual life experience, however, which because of the great similarity, raise a number of questions for which some answers are sought in this thesis* why is it that Rob who also lost his parents through neglect and abandonment, who also knew hunger and tension in the earliest months of li f e , has acquired the inner strength of knowing his own innate worth and value as a human being, and who, because of this, shows promise of being able to make a positive contribution to society at large? In bold contrast the question arises regarding Al - Where have been the weaknesses which have prevented the development of a sense of worth, and of participation and contribution in the social relationships in which he is involved? These two studies have been, used to illustrate and pose the question which this thesis endeav-ours to explore - What happens to foster children as they rf>pfih Y°"Pfi ^ " I t -hood? Are their needs being sufficiently met through the present foster home program to ensure a reasonable personal and social adjustment to life in keeping with their individual capacities? To attempt this task involves the establishment of some criteria against which the adjustment of foster children may be evaluated* It is, however, necessary to examine first some of the characteristics of the adolescent period itself, and to set forth some distinctions in terms of behaviour and reactions which may distinguish levels of adjustment. Any study of adolescent youth has to take into account the phys-ical and emotional forces in each Individual instance to determine even roughly, the degree of mature functioning that is present* Both the ph.vs*  leal and emotional components constitute a part of the total environment with which the adolescent must deal in ordinary life situations, and it has been recognized that this fact creates problems in terms of accurate meas-urement within the scope of the present study* A broad definition of adoles-cence is set forth at the beginning of the thesis, and constitutes the basis from which the direction of this thesis is taken. In an attempt to give sufficient weight to these factors, it appeared necessary to establish two forms of criteria to evaluate, even partially, the personal and social adjustment of adolescent foster children, - that is, both subjective and objective criteria. SUBJECTIVE CRUERB. USED IH EVALUATING ADJUSTMENT The subjective criteria chosen were based primarily upon those established by Lillian Carscadden in her Master of Social Work thesis "An Evaluation of The Client-florker Relationship"*^ In this context the focus 1* Carscadden, Lillian Mary, An Evaluation of the Client-Worker Relationshipf Unpublished thesis, The University of British Columbia, 1951* was upon the capacity of adult clients to form a meaningful relationship with another person* particularly a social worker, whose task it was to work with the client himself in altering disruptive or disorganizing aspects of his situation, and thereby endeavouring to attain a more satisfying personal social, and/or external milieu for daily living* It was assumed in this prior study that the individual's capacity to form a relationship with another person (object relationship or object love, depending upon the par-ticular context and usage) was the central distinguishing characteristic of maturity in human personality* Other important and interrelated character-istics were also enumerated and utilized as criteria of measurement In the Various facets of functioning* These are listed below with the descriptive characteristics assigned to the three degrees of adjustment, (i*e*, poor, limited and good) for each of the six criteria* 1* What is his concept of self7 Poors Lack of self-esteem to a marked degree; very Insecure in most situations; self-depreciating or attempting to appear always self-sufficient, always right, no sense of goal* Limited! Self-confidence in some situations; insecure when facing new or previously difficult situations; some sense of goal Good: Good sense of goal and of achievement; confidence in most situations* 2* Is he gware of his own feelings and does he know toward what person or object they are directed? Poors Has to repress, distort or replace his feelings (real)* Limiteds Awareness of real feelings in some situations, usually those in which awareness does not involve too serious a threat to the personality. Good: Can admit most feelings to consciousness even if they are painful* 3* What ways of coping with reality has he adopted? Poor: Has many defense mechanisms which are frequently put to use •Limited: Some defense mechanisms but less severe in nature and used less frequently* Good: Only a few defense mechanisms which tend to be more con-structive in personality development* Um What is hla ability to endure frustration? Poor: Almost no ability; unable to complete tasks; feels that any frustration indicates dislike or discrimination, or accepts it too readily* Limited. Uneven ability, depending upon the particular situation and its significance to him* Good? Can accept frustration and the necessary postponement of pleasure most of the time; can accept criticisms and does not conclude that criticisms always indicate unjustified attitudes on the part of others* 5m What is his affect tone? . Poor: Severe repression* brittleness, rigidity* shallowness* Limited: Repression in some areas* marked ambivalence, frequent inappropriate responses* Good: Spontaneity, depth, flexibility, appropriateness of re-sponse most of the time* 6* What has been his pattern of relationships with others? Poor: Primary narcissism, excessive submission, severe aggression* T.imji-hfrflt Dependency, anxiety, aggression in some areas; some object relationship, but immature inconsistent responses in social settings. Good: Good object relationship; consistent and positive social participation; able to identify reasonably with authority, (institutions, school, foster parents, teachers, law)* In the application of these criteria in assessment of foster child-ren, those numbered two and five presented particular difficulties, for the following two main reasons: 1* These two criteria highly subjective as they are, proved particularly difficult In this study of the adolescent because the writer was reliant, in most instances, upon a partial case record only, done by another professional person* The recordings also did not usually Include analytical descriptions by the workers. 2. Both these areas (two and five) are those in which any older adoles-cent Is most likely to evidence the least psychological maturity. This would not be considered unusual in our social and cultural set-ting. His awareness of his own feelings and to whom they are directed, (as well as the capacity for depth and breadth of feeling tone) are aspects of psychological maturation which extend beyond the chronological grouping being undertaken in this study which is confined to eighteen year olds. These difficulties have suggested the exclusion for purposes of this study, of these two as criteria of reasonable adjustment in eighteen year old foster children*^ Dr, Josselyn has emphasized the unique and often uneven process of different aspects of growth and development both between adolescents, as well as within the particular individual, in the phases of growth that precede and follow that period that has been arbi-trarily delineated for more intensive study. In the specific instances where these aspects are available in recorded material, and where they can be accurately assessed as operative components in the child's personal and social adjustment, it was decided that case illustrations would be used rather than attempting measurement with insufficient data for a Valid re-sult* Thus, it was decided that the criteria to be used for this study should be confined to the following2 The adolescent'8 feelings about himself — his own value and worth as a person; the ways In which he has coped with the realities of his situation; his capacity to endure frustration; and his pattern of relationships with people In his environment* OBJECTIVE CRITERIA USED IH EVALUATING ADJUSTMENT . In addition to the preceding subjective criteria of adjustment or maturity, certain areas of functioning or achievement by foster child-ren lent themselves more readily to statistical analysis, and these, it is thought, may further contribute to the desired overall assessment of how some foster children actually are able to meet life situations in pre-adult years, 1) The intelligence of most of the adolescents included in this study have been tested against standardized intelligence tests through public schools or the Child Guidance Clinics, The extent to which their intel-1* Discussion with Miss Lillian M, Carscadden, from whose thesis these criteria were adapted, indicated concurrence with the basis for exclusion* lectual capacities have been utilized will be examined in relation to school grades reached* and/or, the extent to which they have found employment in keeping with these potentialities* 2) The importance of physical growth and health during growing years is seen in relation to the total development and adjustment in adolescent and adult years* This will be surveyed* noting where possible, the extent to which the rate of physical maturation has either aided or impeded the total process of adjustment and well being of the selected group* 3) The presence or absence of either or both parents prior to and follow-ing admission to foster care seemed also of particular significance in an assessment of the adjustment of this group of adolescents, as did also the degree to which their own parents had been a continuing factor in their l i f e , or the extent to which substitute parents had filled the parental function* THE SETTING OF THE STUDY. The setting for this evaluation of a selected group of foster children is within the Social Welfare Branch* Department of Health and Welfare for the Province of British Columbia* Child welfare services in the rural and smaller urban communities of British Columbia are given through the field staff of the Social Welfare Branch, which staff also provides a variety of social services to the community* The administrative responsibility for such programs as Child Welfare, Old Age Pensions, and Bonus', Medical and Ancillary services to recipients of financial assistance, Social Allowances and Mothers' Allowances, Venereal Disease and Tuberculosis Control, and Psychiatric Social Services, rests in central divisions of the Social Welfare Branch.^ Although the actual service to the client in the community is performed by the social worker in the district under local supervision, the 1* Psychiatric Social Services, while staffed by the personnel officer of the Social Welfare Branch, actually form a part of the Provincial Secretary's Department, - 9 -appropriate division Is ultimately responsible for interpretation of policy, the establishment and maintenance of uniform policy in line with the func-tions and delegated authority handed down through the Minister of Health and Welfare from the Provincial Legislature* Divisions within the Branch have tended to become less active in direct supervision of the work done in the field offices since 1946 when a program of decentralized supervision was embarked upon* Prior to this time supervision was given by mail, from divisional offices* The Child Welfare Services, however, have not completely followed this pattern of development for a particular reason* The administrative head of the Child Welfare Division is known as the Superintendent of Child Welfare, and her position, unlike other divisional heads, is not an appoint-ment made through the provincial Civil Service Commission, but is a position stipulated within several of the child welfare acts themselves* The Super-intendent of Child Welfare is answerable to the legislature through the Min-ister of Health and Welfare* Entrusted to her is ultimate responsibility for the carrying out of provincial statutes such as the Adoption Act, the Protection of Children Act, the Unmarried Parents Act, as well as other func-tions pertaining to the welfare of children* The Superintendent holds the authority to delegate field staff to act on her behalf in the matter of the legal steps involved in removing guardianship from natural parents according to specified conditions con-tained in the Protection of Children Act* While Section seven of this statute enumerates many conditions which are sufficient cause to bring child-ren and parents before the Courts, and upon which evidence can be presented, the most common basis of action is that of sub-section Nk n, which states a child is deemed to be in need of protection when there is "no parent capable of exercising proper parental control"* It is under this clause that the majority of the children who are included in this study have come into the care of the Superintendent. The written authority for apprehending and bringing a child before a Court can, under the Protection of Children Act only be given by the Superintendent of Child Welfare. Because of the ser-ious implications involved in altering the natural and legal ties between parent and child, it is an authority which has been safeguarded by retention (1) of control by the Superintendent, or those agencies incorporated under the laws of British Columbia to function in the child welfare and protection (2) field. The legal powers implicit in the position of Superintendent of Child Welfare are thus considerably greater than those delegated to other divisional heads, whose ultimate line of responsibility rests through their Immediate superiors, through the Civil Service Commission to the level of ministerial responsibility, and to the provincial legislature* As pointed out previously, admlnistratively Child Welfare services are only one of sev-eral services carried out by the field staff, and it is quite conceivable that an overweighing of service in any one phase of the overall Social Welfare Branch program could occur to the detriment of services to children and their families* All divisional heads are dependent upon the Assistant Director of Welfare, who is the personnel officer of the Branch, for the staffing of their own divisions as well as the maintenance of a full com-plement of staff in the district offices. In an effort to plan and gauge the pressures occurring in the various sections of the program, and to co-ordinate the senior administrative lines of communication, a Planning Coun-c i l , composed of divisional heads, the six Regional Administrators of the 1* The Superintendent of Child Welfare also authorizes in writing Children's Aid Society workers and only those so authorized may apprehend* 2. The Vancouver Children's Aid Society, the Catholic Children's Aid Society, and the Family and Children's Service of Victoria* - 11 * Field Staff, consultants, and Senior Administration meets once every two months* The development of what has become known as the "generalized wel-fare service", or as it is known in the district offices, "the generalized caseload", appears to be a distinctly British Columbia development* It has significance in the context of this study inasmuch as it has a bearing upon the child welfare services given in the province. The findings of this study of foster children point to certain administrative and professional social work considerations in the provision of a consistent casework ser-vice, both quantitatively and qualitatively, throughout the various dis-trict offiees. The future goals of establishing a definition of minimum standards of professional performance in Various services, including the child welfare program, as well as the allocation of staff having various levels of training and experience for the generalized service, are problems of the utmost importance. The carrying out of the legislative requirements and the provision of sound remedial and rehabilitative services with the most effective result to clients has been, and is receiving, the close scru-tiny of senior administrative personnel of the Social Welfare Branch, The problem of staff is a central one, especially in the child welfare program* At the present time, because of shortages in the supply of social workers with one or two years professional training in an accred-ited graduate school of social work, it has been found necessary for the Social Welfare Branch to undertake an abbreviated form of training within the Division of Training to provide sufficient staff to man the district offices throughout the province. Although practice varies, many of the "in-service trainees", as they are called, are required, to carry caseloads approximating those carried by partially or fully trained social workers. While these persons have been chosen largely for their suitability in work-- 12 -lag with people, the variations presented within the same district office in terms of an overall appreciation of the job, and the professional com-petence to provide a casework service, can result in an uneven service to the client* Not infrequently these same variations can and do have ramif-ications in terms of inter-staff relationships and harmony, as well as be-tween the agency and the community. It is a question having both casework and administrative facets which cannot be isolated from each other, A more precise examination of inter-relationships between the administrative structure (with the very realistic problems confronted in the functioning of the overall program - of which Child Welfare services are an important part), and the results achieved in the actual client-worker situation, might prove of some value in the determination of future objectives, as well as contribute to a broader assessment of the effective-ness of social services generally within the province. It is considered, however, that this area could not be included in the present study, as adequate documentation was not available at this time. It is suggested, however, that such a study would be a Valuable contribution to the liter-ature of social work* In considering the rural child welfare program of British Columbia geography and topography are factors which must be taken into account. For purposes of administration the province is divided into six regions according to population and natural geographic divisions - Vancouver Island, Lower Mainland, Upper Fraser Valley, Okanagan, Kootenays and the Caribou. Any service on a province-wide basis presents a very real obstacle to un-iform professional standards of performance when considering the vast areas to be travelled in the Caribou, or, for instance, the weather conditions and various transportation hazards of the Kootenays in winter months. Apart from the range of staff experience and training mentioned previously, - 13 -what can be termed the "natural obstacles" of distances and terrain are a factor in evaluating the quantity of work accomplished. Moreover, each region has its own somewhat unique social and economic characteristics which create pressure upon staff in the overall service they are delegated to ren-der. Such problems as seasonal unemployment, concentration of immigrant groups, availability of housing, transients, to mention a few, are day to day or season to season pressures. There are also the Very real difficulties arising out of the special problems met in the Radical Sons of Freedom Douk-hobor Sect and in the Various native Indian communities in certain areas which have an impact upon the total "generalized welfare service", and are reflected in many instances in the standards of work maintained in the child welfare program. They are mentioned here because they are constant realities which form a part of the overall picture in which child welfare services in British Columbia are provided. While the isolation and inaccessibility of many parts of the pro-vince create difficulties of administration and supervision, (especially with reference to child welfare), the rural areas do have advantages to offer in a child welfare program. One of the greatest of these is perhaps the "sense of community" which can involve the foster child and his foster parents more intimately and actively In community participation and inter-action. For the foster child who has lost his own parents, the secondary but supportive interest of others, such as neighbours, can be a partially compensating and comforting experience. In the more closely-knit setting of the small rural community, the child has an opportunity to reach out for satisfactions in relationships which may have been previously absent in his own family circle. However, it should be remembered also that in some cases, partic-ularly with the delinquent adolescent, community pressure can often increase - H -feelings of isolation and rejection which arise, In part, from the Individ-uals non-conformity to the community pattern* By and large, though* with the child who is not too severely disturbed or anti-social in behaviour, the com-munity often is a strength and an integrating force in the life of the foster child* The rural, or small urban community does not present the complexity of social interaction or the impersonality of inter-relationships which exist in the larger urban community. There has been some indication within the present study that this "sense of community" which a foster child can experience among other adults and his peers who have accepted him for what he is, facilitates the development of broader and more positive social feel-ings, which are essential to maturity in modern society* THE REASONS FOR THE STUDY AND THE METHODS USED. THE REASONS The primary reason involved in attempting a study of older adoles-cent foster children was largely a personal one. As a social worker employed in a child welfare program i t is often difficult under dally pressures of the job to be sufficiently objective to assess what is happening not just to one adolescent, but to a great many of them. The responsibility involved in planning and providing for the physical needs of growing children, as well as the less obvious needs of the mind and the heart and the spirit, seems to warrant a continual enquiry regarding the reasons for successes and failures with foster children on the part of the professional people engaged in the task* It was also thought that such an attempt might suggest further ave-nues of study concerning ways in which the child in need of care out of his own home can receive the facilities necessary to his development as an Indi-vidual and as a member of society* When the social worker, the child pro-tection and placement agencies, as well as the broader community are more - 15 -fully aware of present strengths and present weaknesses In the care provided for foster children, better utilization of present resources and development of new ones are both possible. THE METHODS USED SOURCES AND LIMPTATIOHS; OF MATERIAL; In undertaking the present study, a brief survey of recent mate-rial was made. The Family Service Association of America, the Children's Bureau of the Federal Security Administration of the United States, as well as the Canadian Welfare Council were largely unaware of recent studies on the adjustment of older foster children* Three previous Master of Social Work theses completed in British Columbia had bearing upon the particular topic under study, and were helpful in determining the methods best suited to the present material, and as guides to types of problems encountered in (2) the assessment of the adjustments achieved by adolescent foster children. Following this, helpful discussions with the Superintendent of Child Welfare, and the Placement Supervisor of the Child Welfare Division, resulted in divisional records being made available for reading and note-taking. It was decided that divisional files, although incomplete in some L, The most extensive study of this nature is now very old, having been done in 1924 by Sophie Van S. Thees in the United States. A more recent study is "Adjustment of Foster Children of Alcoholic and Psychotic Parent* age and the Influence of the Foster Home", by Ann Roe and Barbara Bueks, as a portion of the Yale University Memoirs of the Section on Alcoholic Studies, No. 3» in 1945, but which was not available to the writer. 2. Iangdale, Arthur L., How Foster Children Turn Out. Unpublished thesis, School of Social Work, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, B.C. 1951. McLaren, Henry M., Adjustment of the Adolescent in Rural Foster Homes. Unpublished thesis, School of Social Work, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, B.C. 1954* Reed, George A., The Placement of Adolescent Boys. Unpublished thesis, School of Social Work, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, B. C. 1953, - 16 -respects, did give a fairly adequate picture of what was happening to older wards. The practical consideration of using material concentrated at one source was a very real one. However, when a sufficiently definitive pic-ture could not be obtained from the divisional record, this was supplemented by information from district office files. Six out of the total group chosen for study were also known to the writer in field work experience. In addition to what objective material was readily available, it was desired to attempt clarification of the dynamic qualities of total per-sonality development in foster children, insofar as this was possible. The subjective material contained in divisional files was itself qualified by the subjective evaluations of the workers themselves, as well as the bias of the writer in compilation and selection of material from which the pre-sent study was undertaken. The possibility of absolute objectivity becomes more difficult in the areas of complex personality structure and components, and thus any implications drawn in the course of this study must be regarded in the light of, and with an appreciation of, subjective bias* SEIECTION OF CASES;. Several considerations arose when determining upon a method best suited to the available material and the basic question to which some answers were sought. It was decided to confine the study to eighteen year old wards of the Superintendent, and other children eighteen years old who, though not technically wards, received the same services and treatment as wards. The total group selected was thirty-one, which included twenty-three wards of the Superintendent of Child Welfare for British Columbia under the Protection of Children Act or the Juvenile Delinquent's Act, as well as eight non-wards of the Superintendent, who were children who em-igrated to Canada from England under a child Immigration Scheme, and who had bad an institutional type of life both in Canada and in England prior to - 17 * placement in foster homes in British Columbia between 1949 and 1951* These children were treated for a l l practical purposes as wards of the Superin-tendent. They have been included in the group primarily for purposes of contrast because they bad known an institutional setting and it was thought that their pattern of behaviour and attitudes might reflect certain person-ality components to those children born and reared in Canada, The thirty-one children chosen, include those s t i l l in the "pay care" of the Super-intendent, as well as those who are totally or partially self-supporting through employment, marriage, or who have returned to their own parents on a trial basis, and for whom the Superintendent is not paying foster home or institutional rates on their behalf« A l l of these children attained their eighteenth birthday during the calendar year 1954* Since it TOS not possible to undertake a study of a l l the children in the care of the Superintendent now eighteen years old, fifty percent of the wards who had reached this age were chosen, which represents as far as possible, the same sex and age ratio as the total universe* Table I on page 20 presents detailed tabulation and comment* POSSIBLE VALUE OF THE STUDY. It is hoped that the study of these thirty-one foster children may contribute in a small and limited way to the "tested knowledge that underlies the practice of (social work)", and within these same limita-tions, "to ascertain the extent to which the objectives of the agency are (2) being achieved ••••"* The evaluation and assessment of the job which is currently being done in child welfare services, as well as in other pro-grams, contains the important element of social accountability and respon-1* Dimcock, Hedley S. and Treacker, Harleigh.B*, The Supervision of Group  Work and Recreation. Association Press, New York, 1948, p* 217-220* 2* ibid* - 18 -sibility on the part of the agency and its professional personnel: firstly to the people it is directly designed to serve, and ultimately to the broad community which has collectively delegated the carrying-out of specific functions and programs for the common good of its citizens* This respon-sibility is in fact, a cornerstone in the philosophy of welfare services generally in the democratic state. With a recognition of the limitations, but with these goals in mind, this study has been undertaken* CHAPTER II  THE YEARS BEFORE AND DURING PLACEMENT STATISTICAL ANALYSIS THE BACKGROUND OF THE THIRTY-ONE CHILDREN In order to assess, either quantitatively or qualitatively, the degree of adjustment and achievement of the thirty-one children included within this study, i t is necessary to examine the known facts of their origins, and something of their social and family experiences prior to coming into foster home care. While i t is recognized that each child*s total experience has its unique qualities, an examination of some of the known components of their background brings out with greater clarity, the common, as well as some of the less common factors present in the thirty-one adolescents. Before proceeding to an examination of the factual data col-lected for analysis, further reference is necessary to the method utilized in selection of the sample group of thirty-one adolescents from the total number of children in foster care. The following comparative table shows the total number of children in the care of the Superintendent of Child Welfare who reached eighteen years of age during the period January 1, 1954- — December 31, 1954-, with the distribution of the sample chosen for detailed study* - 20 -Table I Table Showing Total Number of Children Eighteen Years of Age  in the Care of the Superintendent of Child Welfare for British  Columbia at March 1st. 1954; According to Category of Care and  Sex Distribution: Also with the Selected Sample Group Shown  According to Category of Care and Sex Distribution? 1. Category of Care Total Children in Care Sample Grc Under Stud mp S.C.W. Wards, P.C.A. Male Female Total Male Female Total 23 20 A3 10 11 21 2. S0C.W0 Wards, J»D«A0 5 1 6 A A 3. Fairbridge lards 8 A 12 A 2 6 Sub-totals of group under study 36 25 61 18 13 31 Ac S.C.W. Non-wards 9 5* Awaiting Committal 2 6, C.A.S. Wards A 7. CoC<A.S. Wards 2 8. Out of Province 3 Sub-total of group not under study 20 Grand Total 81 In the foregoing table the wards of the Superintendent of Child Welfare, including Fairbridge immigrant children, (Nos« 1, 2 and 3) total sixty-one cases, of which thirty-one were finally selected for study* For purposes of this study it seemed advisable to select from the total group a representative distribution of boys and girls in relation to the ratio of males and females in the total group. An exception was made to this rep-resentative ratio in the male and female wards under the Protection of Child-ren and Juvenile Delinquent's Acts in order to obtain an overall balance of one-half of each sex (see Table I, sub-totals of group under study)* - 21 -To give some impression of the number of children who were not the legal wards of the Superintendent, Table I indicates also the wards of three private agencies providing placement and protective services within British Columbia (under numbers 6 and 7),^ ^ who are presently under the Superintendent's jurisdiction, as well as children in the temporary care of the Superintendent of Child Welfare (number 4), children s t i l l legally "before the Courts" (number 5), and those wards who are presently out of the province of British Columbia and not under direct supervision, although legal guardianship Is being retained under British Columbia provincial statutes* This group totalled twenty and were excluded from the present study for several reasons. Although the services provided for children by these private agencies would approximate those given through the field staff of the Social Welfare Branch, there are considerable differences in administrative structure, geographical elements which affect the access-ibility of service, as well as distinct rural-urban contrasts In resources available in foster placement* Then, too, those children in temporary care, or awaiting committal before the Courts, have not had a sufficiently long period in foster care for assessment of its effects and results* Four of the children included for study, although legally wards of the Superintendent, were residing at the time of the study within the metro-politan areas served by the Children'* Aid Society of Vancouver (3) and the Catholic Children's Aid Society of Vancouver (l) by arrangement between the Superintendent of Child Welfare and the Agencies* This arrangement exists to facilitate a greater service to a child with respect to special placement needs, for example, educational opportunities for trades, voca-tional training, university, and nurse's training, which resources are 1, Children's Aid Society of Greater Vancouver, Catholic Children's Aid Society of Vancouver, and Family Services of Victoria* - 22 -largely concentrated in the larger urban centres* Because these four child* ren were in the care of a Children's Aid Society at the Superintendent's request for a specific purpose, the Children's Aid Society's function does not basically differ as a resource in these instances to that of any of the district Social Welfare Branch offices providing supervision to wards of the Superintendent* For purposes of this study, therefore, these agencies will be regarded similarly to any of the district offices and not as the separate legal entities which they are (insofar as the powers conferred upon them by the Protection of Children Act) within their own jurisdictional limits, that is, within the "greater" Vancouver area* TABULATION OF MATERIAL For each adolescent included within the sample, similar statist-(1) ical information was recorded on a standardized sheet* It is from this factual data that the following areas relating to the families and children will be discussed* 1* Racial and Cultural background 2* Religion 3 * Marital Status of Parents 4* Age of Children at Time of Admission to Care 5* Number of Placements 6* Length of time in Foster Care 7* Health Factors 3 * Intelligence 9. Educational Achievement and Suitability of Employment This material will constitute the basis of analysis in Chapter II* RACIAL AND CULTURAL BACKGROUND Racial and cultural influences have an important bearing on the lives and the functioning of people in our society* They inevitably rep-resent a significant portion of the individual's total heritage, biologically 1* See Appendix, pages 74, 75, 77, 78 and 79. - 23 -as well as socially. For these foster children, some of whom knew sub-stitute care in settings which differed racially and culturally from those of their own backgrounds, it seemed logical to include these factors in a study concerned with their personal and social adjustment* The thirty-one children were separated from their natural parents at varying ages, and an examination of the possible bearing or influence the parents1 racial and cultural roots had had upon the children,in light of the actual time they had actually lived in their native environment, was seen as desirable* In an effort to extract this information, a l l cases were reviewed with the object in mind of assessing whether racial or cul-tural factors had played any significant part in the adolescent adjustment of the children under study, and in fifteen of the total children this appeared to be the case. In view of this a chart tabulating the length of time in which these particular fifteen children were under the influence (1) of the cultural patterns of the parents was completed, and the following numerical summary table obtained. Table II Summary Table Showing Length of Contact Prior to Admission to  Foster Care Between Parents and Children in Fifteen Ca3es  Where Cultural and Racial Factors Appeared to be Significant^ Contact With Parents 0-5 yrs. 6-10 yrs. 11-16 yrs. Not Known Total Father 3 3 5 U 15 Mother 2 3 5 5 15 TOTAL 5 6 10 9 30 From the preceding Table it can be seen that eight children whose histories indicated cultural and racial factors which for one reason or 1, See Appendix,Chart I, page 77. - 24 -another made their growing-up difficult, had lived with their own parents for periods in excess of six years* The five children falling within the period 0-5 years, actually had lived with their parents either four or five years* Because this infounation was not available with respect to four fathers and five mothers, it is not possible to draw any definite conclusion, but these same case histories showed clear indication that there were cultural differences in the parental background and environment which presented difficulties for the child in foster care. These children had been in their own family group for a considerable period of time before being admitted to care. As a result, the inculcated attitudes of the parents, and whatever racial and cultural conflicts existed in their out-look and handling of their children may well have conditioned, to some degree, the attitudes and outlook of the children themselves as they entered foster care* At the same time as an examination was made of the possible bearing the parent's cultural and racial influence had bad on the child-rens adjustment, the racial origins of the parents in the thirty-one cases (1) under study were also tabulated* The following table sets forth this information in summary form* 1* See Appendix, Chart I, pages 74 and 75 - 25 -Table III Table Showing Racial Origin of Fathers and Mothers of Thirty- one Children in Care According to Category of Care. Race Sex P.C .A. Wards J.D.A. Wards Fair-bridge TOTAL Anglo-Saxon Fa. 12 2 6 20 Mo. 10 2 6 18 Scandijnavian Fa. 1 1 Mo. 1 1 Central European Fa. 2 2 Mo. 3 3 Slavic Fa. 1 1 Mo. 1 1 North American Fa. 1 1 Indian Mo. 3 3 Italian Fa. 1 1 Mo. 0 Belgian and Fa. 1 1 2 Dutch Mo. 0 Mixed Fa. 2 2 Mo. A A Not Known Fa. 0 Mo. 1 1 TOTAL Fa. 21 A 6 31 Mo. 21 A 6 31 It can be noted from the preceding table that twenty fathers and eighteen mothers in the total sample of thirty-one parents of each sex were of Anglo-Saxon origin. This number included Canadian born as well as parents who had emigrated at some time from Great Britain. The parents of Fairbridge children f e l l exclusively within this group, although they were at no time resident within Canada, with the exception of one mother who subsequently emigrated to this country. In none of these cases did the - 26 -cultural or racial influence of the parents appear to be a significant factor in their later adjustment to foster care. It can also be seen from Table III that the remaining parents of the foster children were of various racial backgrounds, a l l of whom had emigrated at some time from their country of birth to come to Canada. This involved racial, cultural and often language differences for the child to cope with in his early life and later in the new environment when in foster care. It has been indicated by sociologists who have studied the impact of a new culture upon the recently arrived immigrant, that there fre-quently arises personal and environmental stresses from contrasts in values, institutions, methods of coping with daily realities, as well as the people with whom he meets in his work and his neighbourhood,^ The result upon the individual in this situation is frequently one of disorganization and confusion between the inculcated values and attitudes of the immigrant's native race and custom, and the contrasting ways and outlook of the new society In which he finds himself. This concept of "cultural conflict", as it has been termed, appears to have some validity in those cases where there has been sufficient information to gain an appreciation of what the cultural differences meant in terms of family breakdown, as well as what this had meant to the individual child in later foster home experience, As an example of cultural conflict and the impact which this had upon a particular foster child, the following case illustration is presented. Amy C. Case Amy's father was a central European immigrant married to a woman of English background. The father had been a peasant farmer in Czechoslovakia 1, The character and process of social disorganization and the dilemma of the immigrant in a fluctuating social order has been described in detail by S.D, Clarke in the "Social Development of Canada" and by Stonequist in "Marginal Man", as well as other recognized authorities in standard sociology text». - 27 as a youth, and had been raised in a setting of hard physical labour and well defined social strata. The family unit was essentially an economic one, with a l l the family members participating in the production of food and home crafts in order to exist. The father was unchallenged head of the family, and his authority as ultimate arbiter was an accepted part of the cultural pattern, in the old world. In Canada, however, the application of these methods in Amy's father's case, created conflict of a severe nature. His strong concept of the inferior place of his wife, who was herself Anglo-Saxon by birth and rearing, and his determination that she should mould herself to his own ideas of family organization, brought down the wrath of the community in which they lived, and isolated both parents and children from neighbourly communication and interchange. Eventually, the mother, who was required to work long and hard hours in the fields, expressed her rebellion and resent-ment at being placed in this role by turning to excessive drinking. The four children of the union were reported by the community to have insuf-ficient and improper care from the mother, and severe, authoritarian dis-cipline meted out by the father in a losing struggle to maintain his con-trol over them. Upon the death of the mother, the living standards in comparison to families around them deteriorated even morej the children were in open rebellion against the increasing brutality of the father. Amy, upon admission to the care of the Superintendent of Child Welfare at f i f -teen years of age, was an isolated, frightened, sexually promiscuous girl. While it is recognized that many factors besides the race and cul-ture were present in this situation, the disorganizing and conflicting for-ces of dissimilar backgrounds of the parents themselves, involving habits, attitudes, the roles of parents in relation to children, in addition to the lack of understanding of the new community in which they lived in British Columbia, point to the significance of racial and cultural differences within families as well as communities, as contributing causes in the break-down of families. In this particular instance, the normal drives of the adolescent towards emancipation and identification with the less personal associations of her Canadian friends, intensified the normal heightening of adolescent conflict. The fact that she was able to make a suitable adjustment in a foster home in which there were no inter-<racial or inter-cultural tensions would lend strength to the likelihood that racial and cultural conflicts in Amy's background had had a direct bearing on both her own and her parents unhappiness. - 28 -While Table III indicates only one case where the parent was entire-ly North American Indian in origin, the five cases shown under "Mixed" origin had some Indian ancestry in their backgrounds. It is recognized the North American Indian or the individual of partial Indian ancestry is often in a difficult position from a cultural and social point of view. The North American Indian culture and social organization has felt keenly the im-pact of mechanization, mass production and the growth of urbanization as they have become imprinted in the economic and social structure of recent times. Differences in values, standards, and institutions have tended to create conflicts and confusion for the individual caught between the tie to the traditional ways and customs, and the increasing necessity econ-omically, of adopting the "white man's" code in competitive and industrial society. The Indian's or part Indian's dilemma is that of being on the margin of two cultures, but not wholly a part of either. If he leaves his Indian reservation, he loses his ancestral and tribal rights, yet he is not accepted fully beyond these geographical bounds, Christine's and Emil's families illustrate partially the problems encountered by the Indian or part Indian child whose racial background has been a factor in their foster home experience, Christine C. Case (P.C.A, #8) Christine's parents were both Indians who had lost their Indian status under the Indian Act, Mr, C, had moved off the reservation in northern British Columbia to locate employment, which was not readily avail-able to his home on the reservation. This meant that he and his children, if they went with him, also lost whatever share they might have in the tribal band funds, as well as forfeited any community property. The home situation of the parents was not considered particularly good, and upon the death of the mother and father within a year of each other, Christine went to live with her aged grandparents. Concern for Christine arose in this set-ting as her three older sisters became illegitimately pregnant, and it was felt she might also if left without adequate supervision in the grandparents home. At this time she was fifteen years of age, and was sullen and resent-ful about her separation from her "own people". She was allowed long visits with her older brothers and sisters, but the desire to know some sense of security with her own race and relatives, even under rather dixe physical 29 -circumstances, was not compensated for by two foster home placements in white homes of superior physical standards. She felt strange, punished and alone. She longed to return to those she knew, and was described as an unhappy, unsettled adolescent girl, Emil's family illustrates the problems of two races within a family which had not retained the external controls of either culture, and being unaccepted by the community, the pressures usually present toward conform-ity were ineffective, Emil H. Case (P.C.A. #11) Emil's father was Norwegian, and his mother was a Haida Indian, Emil was born prior to his parents marriage, which was a discordant, stormy union, involving separations and long periods in which the father was away fishing. The father was an unstable, self-centered person, with little sense of responsibility for his family. Both he and his wife were heavy drinkers, and provided inconsistent care for the numerous children. The strong feelings of inferiority engendered by her husband's disregard for her worth combined with her own sense of inadequacy, led to progressive dis-integration and promiscuity following the husband's desertion, Emil and his seven brothers and sisters, many of whom had different fathers, even-tually came into foster care with a heritage of two racial backgrounds unhappily mingled in a home that lacked any security or acceptance for him, or that could give him any sense of standard in the community in which he lived. Today, at eighteen, he is intermittently employed after six place-ments which were interspersed with futile runaways to the reservations where his swarthy, Indian features might somehow go unnoticed, and his feelings of isolation become, even temporarily, less acute. RELIGIOUS BACKGROUND The case records of the thirty-one children studied did not indi-cate the extent to which the parents actively practiced their stated religious affiliation, but the inferences in many files suggested that reg-ular attendance at church, or the church as a functional part of these parents lives, did not in fact, exist. The following table sets forth the religious associations of the parents, according to the major faiths represented in the total group of children under study. - 30 -Table IV Table Showing Religion of Thirty-one Cages According to the  Authority under which the Children were Admitted to the Care of  the Superintendent of Child Welfare. RELIGION CATEGORY OF CA RE TOTALS PERCENT-AGES T.C A , Wards J . D . A . Wards Fair-bridge Male Female Male Female Male Female PROTESTANT A 8 3 A 2 21 67.74 ROMAN CATHOLIC A 2 1 7 22.58 FUNDAMENTALIST 1 1 3.23 MIXED to 1 1 2 6.45 TOTALS 10 11 A 0 A 2 31 100 1 From this table it can be seen that over two-thirds of the total group of parents stated themselves as Protestant. This number is increased as a result of the six Fairbridge children whose parents were a l l of Anglo-Saxon origin and Protestant faith. The Protestant denominations represented included: Church of England, United, Presbyterian, and Lutheran churches. Adherents of the Roman Catholic faith were 22.58% of the total number; 3*2856 Pentecostal, and 6.45% involving mixed Protestant—^oman Catholic back-grounds, which were nominally maintained following marriage. MARITAL STATUS OF PARENTS From Table V i t can be calculated that 70.96% of the total group were children born in wedlock, while 19.35% were born within a common-law union which was of a lasting nature, and 9.67% were born out of wedlock, paternity being unknown or unestablished. Thus, in 29.02% of the thirty-1. "Mixed" — is a combination of religious differences presumably main-tained by parents following marriage* - 31 -one cases the children were born of an extra-msrital relationship. These figures do not indicate, (and the information was not available) the pos-sibility of the children included within the "in wedlock" category being the result of casual relationships occurring during the legal marriage of the parents. Table V. Table Showing Original Marital Status of Family in Thirty-one  Cases According to Category of Care. Category of Care Original Marital Status of Family TOTALS: IN WEDLOCK COM! 0N-IAW OUT OF WEDLOCK Male Female Male Female Male Female Male Female P.C .A. Wards 6 8 A 2 1 10 11 J.D.A. Wards A A Fairbridge 2 2 2 A 2 Sub-Total 12 10 A 2 2 1 18 13 TOTALS 22 6 J 31 An examination of the histories of a l l married parents showed desertions, periodic separations, unhappy or even violent marriages, with promiscuity and/or irregular marital relationships existing at the time, or subsequent to, the admission of their children to foster care* In no case was a pic- ture of reasonable parental unity and marital stability present. Some of the most intensely unhappy situations for parents and children were among the legally married parents, and it appeared from the cases studied that the questions of irregular marital relationships and the subsequent birth of children out of wedlock, are in themselves, not accurate or sole indicies of disturbed parent-child relationships as has been formerly believed* The following table gives some picture of the main precipitating causes for family breakdown at the time the thirty-one children in this - 32 -study were admitted to foster home care, details being abstracted from the case files: W e VI Table Showing Cause of Family Breakdown in Thirty-one Cases  According to the Authority Under which the Children were  Admitted to the Care of the Superintendent of Child Welfare. Cause of Family Children Committed or Admitted under: TOTALS Breakdown Wards P.C .A. Wards J.D.A, Falrbrldge(l) Death of one or both parents 7 2 1 10 Absence of one or both parents by des-ertion, war service, separation, divorce, or mental illness. 10 2 3 15 Physical Neglect — both parents present 2 2 Emotional Neglect — both parents present 1 1 Only one parent — unmarried mothers providing Inadequate care 1 2 3 TOTALS 21 A 6 31 Table VI lists five causes which appeared the most frequently in the family breakdown. It can be seen that ten of the children, or approx- imately one-^ bhlrd lost one or both parents by death* A further fifteen adolescents had lost one or both parents through desertion or absence from the home for various reasons. An additional three cases where the only parent present was the unmarried mother, meant that twenty-eight of the (1) Fairbridge Farms began closing In 1949, and a program of foster place-ment was worked out between the Fairbridge authorities and the Super-intendent of Child Welfare, the children being admitted over a period of two years. For purposes of family breakdown, however, the reasons for admission are those shown in their personal histories at the time they were institutionalized in England during war years. - 33 -total group of thirty-one children had one or even no parent functioning. at the time these children were removed from their own homes. In the group of fifteen families, where the cause of breakdown was due to absence of one or both parents, seven cases were due to deser-tion, four cases as a result of war service of the father; three to separation or divorce, and one involving mental illness. In every instance, there were indications that marital dishar- mony P quarrelling, financial and emotional insecurity were contributing factors to the precipitating cause of family breakdown, frequently extend-ing over a period of years. The distribution of these cases was propor-tionately 50% for each of the three categories of care — i.e. Protection of Children Act Wards, Juvenile Delinquent's Act Wards, and Fairbridge Wards. TIME OF ADMISSION TO FOSTER CARE The age at which children enter foster home care is often regard-ed as one of the important factors in terms of the degree of success or failure in their foster home adjustment and personality development. The following table indicates the ages at which these children were separated from their own parents and environment, to be cared for by substitute parents. - 34 -Table VII , . Table Showing Age^1' at the Time of Admission to Foster Home Care  for Thirty-one Children as Related to Sex and Category of Care. Category of Care Age and Sex of Wards Under 1 1-6 7-11 12-14 Over 14 Sub-Totals TOTALS M F M F M F H F M F M F Wards P.C.A. 1 1 2 2 A 2 3 3 3 10 11 21 Wards J.D.A. 1 3 Fair-bridge 2 2 2 4 2 6 Sub-Totals 1 1 2 2 A 2 6 5 5 3 18 13 TOTALS 2 A 6 11 8 31 31 It can be calculated from this table that only 6.45$ of the thirty-one children came into the Superintendent's care under one year of age. In the 1-6 year range, there were only four admissions to care, or 12.90$ of the total group of thirty-one. Two of these children were under the age of two, and one five years of age; a l l three of whom came from families where permanent release for adoption placement might have been pos-sible with some consistent help to the natural parents in resolving their realistic limitations in providing for their children* It can be seen that six cases, or 19.36$ of the total group were admitted between the ages of six and eleven years of age. Examination of the histories of these children suggest the success or failure of the fos-ter care experience was related to the extent of personality damage upon admission, as well as the degree of placement permanence and security achieved in the provision of substitute care. (1) Includes periods of previous non-ward care i f i t was continuous, and wardship was undertaken while the children were within the Super-intendent's temporary care. - 35 -The largest group of admissions to foster care were those between the ages of twelve and fourteen. These children, numbering eleven, or 35.48% of the total group, as well as those where admission occurred beyond their fourteenth birthday, (eight cases or 25.81%) were the ones in which the greatest risks of success in placement might occur. For these child-ren, i t often meant their characteristic reaction patterns were partially established, and efforts toward emancipation from parental controls was a normal expectation. It is to be noted that while a l l admissions at earlier ages were those under the Protection of Children Act, a l l admissions under the Juvenile Delinquent's Act as well as Fairbridge Wards, were during this c r i t i c a l period in the lives of these children. Particularly for those children in whom aggression had become a means of coping with their situations, the four histories of the Juvenile Delinquent's Act wards indi-cated definite placement problems subsequent to admission. Fairbridge children, as stated previously, were not admitted until the closing of the school from 1949—-1952. G NUMBER OF PLACEMENTS. Closely linked with the age of admission of the thirty-one child-ren, is the degree of placement permanency achieved for these children f o l -lowing admission to foster home care. Of the total group under study, there were twelve children who experienced only one or two foster home placements: ten who knew three  or four placements; six who had five or six: one with seven or eight  foster homes: and two who had no less than ten or more foster home placements« While placement permanency in foster care is desired in order to afford the greatest degree of emotional security for the child during grow-ing years, i t can not be automatically assumed that remaining in one home - 36 -is Indicative of unqualified success. The following case may illustrate the implications which, permanency in placement may have for one particular child, Florence B. Case (P.CA. #14) Florence B. was admitted to temporary care at twelve years of age. Her father had been absent In the services for several years, and the mother's high strung, bizarre behaviour was regarded by the family doctor as advan-cing mental illness. Upon the father's return from overseas, Florence's parents separated, and private plans for placement were made by the parents© (Eventually, with no payment for her care coming from her parents, respon-sibility was temporarily assumed pending assessment of whether re-establish-ment of the family might take place. The private placement was continued throughout the subsequent years, although there were indications that Florence was not fully accepted by the foster parents and their family* Florence appeared to often feel some real or imagined discrimination on the part of the foster parents compared to their treatment of their own children. Despite what would seem to be a lack of a sense of really belonging and being a part of her foster family, Florence has been able to undertake train-ing as a nurses' aid following completion of her Grade X, Considering Flor-ence was not a bright student, and possessed only dull normal intelligence, her choice of occupation and reasonably adequate social adjustment appear to augur fairly favourably from outward indications* Permanence of placement in Florence's case appears to have been a "compromiseM between the risks involved in replacement and the partial satisfaction which appeared to have been achieved In the home she had known, and in which she had been placed by her parents. The degree of placement permanence has different implications again in the following case, involving two placements during a total period in foster care of twelve years, Mario B. Case (P.C.A. #2) Mario came Into the Superintendent's care with his two older brothers following his own family's disintegration, A temporary place-ment was made pending exploration of Mario's grandparent's home as a re-source. After five months in the temporary home, Mario went to live with his grandparents who operated an orchard, and where he has remained. At sixteen years of age his grandmother died, but continuation of this plan was possible* He is now completing Grade XII where he has taken an agri-cultural specialty. He has been described as a stable, industrious, hard-working boy who has made a good home and school adjustment* While permanency of placement can have different meanings when considered in the light of the child's total history, multiple replace-ment of children is generally regarded as undesirable. The following - 37 -case summary, which involves a history of eleven placements, illustrates the damage which can result. The C l i f f W. Case (P.C.A. #21) C l i f f was admitted to care at twenty-three months of age with his five siblings following the death of his father and the desertion of his mother, who has never reappeared to enquire about her children. Cliff was placed with his older brothers in the home of an older widow, where he remained until eleven years of age. He was described as an attractive, healthy baby, quite bright and normal. As the years went by, Cli f f is older brothers ran away from this foster home to fend for themselves, and as Cliff himself began to seek independence and to assert himself, the foster mother requested his removal on short notice after over nine years in the same home. Between Cliff's eleventh year, and his eighteenth, he rapidly went through ten placements, Interspersed with runaways. Running away from situations in which i t was not possible to trust adults, became Cliff's characteristic way of reacting to l i f e . It seemed as i f he desperately tried to reject others before he himself might again be abandoned and dis-possessed. At eighteen years of age he has stopped Mrunningn in a l i t e r a l sense, but his staying qualities in academic work as well as social inter-relationships reflect the impermanence and the feeling of isolation which his l i f e thus far has created. LENGTH OF TIME IN FOSTER HOME CARS A; survey of the records revealed that the length of time each child had spent in foster care varied from eighteen years to one year eleven months. Four children had been in care between sixteen and eighteen years; three between eleven and fifteen years; ten between six and ten years; eleven between two and five years; and three had been in care two years or less. It was not possible to determine whether statistical cor-relation might exist between the length of time in foster home care and the apparent adjustment of the thirty-one children because of lack of information in the records. The effect of length of time In foster home care, therefore, could be seen only in terms of the individual circumstances peculiar to each case, A more detailed examination of this factor will be included in Chapter III, in relation to the subjective criteria of adjust-ment. - 38 -HEALTH: There were indications from the records that despite neglect and previously unsuitable surroundings for healthy physical growth, the group as a whole have had a good health record during the period of foster home care. Those requiring medical treatment throughout their stay in care, were afforded whatever the condition warranted according to medical advice. The impression gained was that the policy and practice of the child welfare program In British Columbia to provide a consistent standard of medical care,had been generally utilized to advantage in service to the child's well-being. It has been a policy of the Superintendent of Child Welfare to have any serious illness reported routinely to her office. Thus, in many of the records examined, the absence of reference to health problems was taken as an indication that there were likely none of a particularly ser-ious nature. Public Health services were available to a l l children through the schools they attended. School dental service for al l children under nine years of age has recently been provided in some communities In the province, but is not a general program. It appeared evident that lack of  dental care was the most common as well as most serious lack in the med- ical services provided. This applied to long standing neglect which existed prior to admission to the Superintendent's care, as well as some instances following admission where consistent and adequate dental care was not arranged. One child required full dentures upon admission, while another required extensive orthodontic treatment for a condition which did not receive routine dental care earlier. Failure to provide dental care with-in the past ten years on the basis of the child's need, has not been a restriction of policy, and could only be explained by lack of accessibility - 39 * to dentists for treatment, or failure of workers to interpret the importance of dental care to the foster parents. Five children required appendectomies; several needed eye glasses; one child suffered from a chest weakness, while another child: had a slight heart murmur as a result of rheumatic fever. None of these conditions appears to have been permanently handicapping to the child's later adjust-ment and functioning. Six children came from families where exposure to tuberculosis existed at some time during their lives with their natural parents. One foster child was placed in a foster home and remained there for some years, where the foster father was absent from the home and under active treatment for tuberculosis. The medical clearance and chest x-ray normally required upon application had not been obtained prior to placement. The child, however, has shown clear x-rays and due precautions were apparently taken. Venereal Disease in the parents was not transmit-ted to any of the children included within this study. One child who showed mild symptoms of idiopathic epilepsy in early adolescence is no longer subject to seizures, and no medication has been necessary, INTELLIGENCE Some type of standardized intelligence test had been administered to a l l but one of the thirty-one children. These consisted of ratings done by trained psychologists in the Child Guidance Clinics, as well as mass group tests done in the public school systems. These tests were done at different times and under differing circumstances, and are, there-fore, valid only as a tentative approximation of the general i n t e l l -igence of the thirty-one children. This is set forth in Table VIII, - 40 -Table VIII Table Showing Approximate Ranee of Intelligence Quotient  Ratings as Related to Category of Care^ RANGE GF I.Q, RATINGS CATEGORY OF CARE TOTALS P.C A.Wards J.DA.WARDS Fairbridge Below 70 (Defective) 1 1 70—79 (Borderline Defective) 1 1 2 •80—89 (Dull Normal) 7 1 8 90—109 (Average) 11 3 3 17 110—119 (Superior) 1 1 2 120 or over (Very Superior) Not Rated 1 1 TOTALS 21 4 6 31 From the preceding table it can be noted that approximately one-half of the total sample, or seventeen cases, fell within the average range* Within the "average" classification, the available I.Q, ratings were most predominantly weighted towards the lower range of 90—109, Eight of the total group fell within the "dull normal" category, two in the "borderline", and one in the "defective"range. This suggests twentyt-eight of the thirty-one cases had ratings of average and less than average intellectual capac-ities according to the usual scales in I.Q, tests. Two cases f e l l within the superior range, while one Fairbridge case was not rated. m 41 -EDUCATIONAL ACHIEVEMENT AND EMPLOYMENT STABILITY In order to gain some impression of the overall educational achieve-ment of the thirty-one children, the grades reached as at June 1st, 1954 were set forth in Table LX. Table IX Table Showing School Grades Reached by Thirty-ope Children  According to the Type of Care under which they were  Admitted to Foster Care, SCHOOL GRADE REACHED W TYPE OF CARE TOTAL IN EACH GRADE P.C .A.Wards J.D.A.Wards Fairbridge Grade VII 2 2 0 Grade VIII 4 0 3 7 Grade K 3 1 1 5 Grade X 6 0 0 6 Grade XI 1 1 2 A Grade XII 2 0 0 2 Vocational Training 2 0 0 2 University 1 0 0 1 TOTALS 21 u 6 31 From the above table, it can be seen that sixteen of the total group of thirty-one children had attained Grade IX or less, and the remain-ing fifteen cases had reached Grade X or higher educational qualifications. No distinct differences appeared between the male and female adolescents in the school grades reached. At least six of those completing Grades IX, X, and XI, have indicated intentions of proceeding with further education, thus the above table cannot be regarded as a final account of the 1. as at June 1, 1954. •* 12 -educational careers of these children. One boy is attending University and plans to continue his education until graduation in three or four years time. In terms of the approximate range of intelligence ratings in the total group, the educational attainment thus far would appear to indicate a relatively satisfactory use of these children's potential capacities. This impression is strengthened by the fact that approximately one-fifth of the total group will continue education in high schools or technical training schemes beyond the grades in which they are now. It is interesting to note that the five adolescents currently beyond Grade XI, were a l l wards under the Protection of Children Act. By and large, these were children whose intelligence was at least "average", and whose foster home experience had been sufficiently stable and satisfying that continuance in school was made possible. From the records examined, these cases represented those in which the social worker, foster parents and the school, gave consistent support to realistic and positive educational goals. Those in the lowest school grades, were those children with borderline or defective intelligence quotients, as well as those adoles-cent's whose emotional disturbance was such that they were unable to con-structively use educational facilities available to them. Those adolescents who had terminated schooling and found employ-ment were those whose educational equipment for skilled or semi-skilled employment was at a minimum. The jobs which these eleven boys and girls had been able to obtain included waitressing, deck hands, car hops, farm hands, logging, factory work, and general labouring. A l l of these occu- , jpations are such that seasonal layoffs, slack periods and other uncer-tainties would tend to place these adolescent's in an unfavourable position in the event of a falling labour market in which competition was a sig-nificant factor. Despite this fact, a l l of these eleven were currently - A3 -engaged in employment, four having returned to live with relatives, and two remaining with their foster parents and working on the foster parents' farms. One boy in this group was adopted at eighteen years of age by his foster parents who had regarded him as their own child during growing years, but who had been reticent about completing the adoption legally. An additional two boys joined the armed services where i t is possible some trades or semi-skilled training may be made available during their military service. One of the girls in this group was married at eighteen. One Fairbridge boy's adjustment in simple clerical work has been tentative, and his capacity to Inject effort into his employment situations has been most limited. REGAFHUIATIOH From certain factual information available regarding the thirty-one children under study, the following was established; There were indi-cations in fifteen cases that cultural factors were most predominant where differences and conflicts existed between the parental backgrounds and the patterns of the communities in which they lived. A l l cases showing cul-tural influences experienced some extended contact with their own parents before admission to foster carej eight cases having six or more years within their own natural environment, and the remaining seven having four to six years contact. Racial origins of the parents showed a wide distribution, with the largest number being of Anglo-Saxon origin. Case illustrations were used to indicate the significance of cultural and racial influences in first and second generation "new - Canadian" backgrounds, as well as in the North American Indian and "mixed" families and children. It was found the religious affiliations of the parents were nominal, and possible religious influences could not be assessed. The marital status of parents indicated approximately 30$ of the children under study were born of an extra-marital relationship, with a l l cases showing unhappy, even violent marital relationships. Some of the most unsatisfactory family situations were among legally married parents. In surveying the precipitating cause of breakdown in families, i t was noted that in twenty-eight of the thirty-one cases, one parent, or In some cases, both parents were absent through death, desertion or separation. The family break-down resulting in admission to foster care for the children occurred at var-ious ages in the children's lives. Approximately one-third of the group entered foster care between the ages of one year and eleven years of agej one-third between twelve and fourteen years (during the pre-«dolescent period); one-quarter during adolescence. Only two cases entered foster care during their first year of l i f e . Following admission to foster care, i t TOS seen that the degree of permanency in foster home placement showed wide variation between children. Thirty-eight percent of the total group experienced one or two placements; seventy percent less than four moves; and approximately thirty percent more than four different foster homes. Case illustrations were used to Indicate degrees of placement permanence in individual situations. Comment was also included on the length of time the thirty-one children have been in foster home care. Examination of health histories revealed the children had ex-perienced good general health. The most common problem not receiving med-ical attention was that of consistent dental care, both prior to, and f o l -lowing admission to foster care. From the standpoint of general intelligence i t was found over one-half the total group f e l l within the average range, according to various standardized tests. The distribution in the lower and higher ranges did not appear unusual. Educational attainment of the thirty-one adolescents indicated approximately f i f t y percent had attained grade nine or less, while the remaining f i f t y percent had obtained grade ten or more. A significant number of adolescents were proceeding, or intended doing so, with special-ized training of some description. One adolescent boy is currently attend-ing University. (See Case Story of Rob T., Chapter I). For those adolescents who had left school and are now engaged in employment i t was seen the jobs available to them were of an unskilled nature, and subject to seasonal or other layoffs. Two boys had joined the armed forces. CHAPTER III  THE FOUNDATION FOR ADULTHOOD SOME ESTIMATE OF SOCIAL ADJUSTMENT The factual data outlined in Chapter II provides a background of information about the children and their cultural and family heritage,, There has been l i t t l e specific reference to the aspects of foster care •which include the important areas of feelings, attitudes and inter-relationships. It is to these considerations^ that the focus of study is directed in this chapter, in order that a broader picture might be obtained,, people do not live by averages but by their own private visions of r e a l i t y , " ^ THE CRITERIA. OF ADJUSTMENT In the adaptation of criteria to assess these factors, i t was recognized that a l l of the thirty-one children had been set apart from the normal adolescent by separation from, or loss of, one or both parents and the intimate surroundings of their own homes. In place of the natural home, foster care was utilized as the resource to provide for the physical wants of food, clothing and shelter. At the same time, i t was desired that foster home care might also give theopportunity for new relationships as a partial substitute for the primary parent-child relationship which had been lost by death or forfeiture. In this sense, modern child welfare practice has placed foster care within the resources referred to as "social treatment", 1, Hamilton, Gordon, Theory and Practice of Social Casework. Columbia University Press, New York, 1951, page 12, - 47 -Through this resource i t was hoped the child might be helped more naturally to realize his own unique potentialities, for social workers believe, The greatest gift is to enable another to realize his own capacities for change and growth"."^ The extent to which foster care has been able to help these child-ren meet the external or social demands of their individual circumstances, and the degree to which a dynamic appreciation of the psychological growth process has been integrated into the work with each individual child, as well as the group as a whole, is the purpose and desire of this estimation of social adjustment. The criteria chosen, with the descriptive characteristics of three levels of functioning, are listed below. 1, What is the adolescent's feeling about himself?—his own Value and worth?  Poor: Lack of self-esteem to a marked degree; very insecure in most situations; self depreciating or attempting to appear always self-sufficient, always right, no sense of goal. Limited: Self-confidence in some situations; insecure when facing new or previously difficult situations; some sense of goal. Good: Good sense of goal and of achievement; confidence in most situations, 2, What ways of coping with reality has he adopted? Poor: Has many defense mechanisms which are frequently put to use, Limited: Some defense mechanisms but less severe in nature, and used less frequently. Good: Only a few defense mechanisms which tend to be more constructive in personality development. 1. Hamilton, Gordon, Theory and Practice of Social Casework. Columbia University Press, New York, 1951, page 22 * 48 -3. What is his ability to endure frustration? Poor: Almost no ability; unable to complete tasks; feels that any frustration indicates dislike or discrimination, or accepts i t too readily. Limited; Uneven ability, depending upon the particular situation and its significance to him. Good: Can accept frustration and the necessary postponement of pleasure most of the time; can accept criticisms and does not conclude that criticisms always indicate unjustified attitudes on the part of others. 4« What has been his pattern of relationships with others? Poor: Primary narcissism, excessive submission, severe aggression. Limited: Dependency, anxiety, aggression in some areas; some oject relationship, but immature, inconsistent responses in social settings. Good: Good object relationship; consistent and positive social participation; able to identify reasonably with authority (institutions, school, foster parents, teachers, law.) These criteria were used as a measurement at two periods in the child's l i f e - that is, at the time of admission to foster care, and at eighteen years of age. The differences which appeared in the ratings of "poor", "limited", and "good" for each of the four criteria between these two points in time, were regarded as a significant index of the extent to which the individual foster home experience of each child had facilitated growth in these four stated areas. METHOD OF RATING Each case was examined according to these criteria, and a work - 49 -chart prepared.^ From this chart, summary tables showing the ratings as-signed for each of the separate criteria were completed. These appear on the following pages, accompanied by a discussion of the cases, with certain case illustrations. CRITERIA, I: THE ADOLESCENT'S FEELINGS OF WORTH AND VALUE ABOUT HIMSELF. From the table below, i t can be seen that a l l the children evidenced a "poor11 or nlimited n rating with respect to their own feelings of worth and value as a person at the time they were admitted to foster care. None were regarded as having a "good" rating. Proportionately, no significant differ-ences appeared between the Various categories of care at this time. At eigh-teen years of age, considerable movement is seen from poor to limited, and five children had progressed from either poor or limited to a more adequate and positive feeling about themselves, and could be rated as "good". While the greatest proportion of the total cases were ini t i a l l y in the "poor" range (twenty^four cases), at eighteen years of age, the significant movement appeared to be towards the "limited" rating, which included seventeen cases. Table X Summary Table Showing Comparative Ratines Assigned to Thirty- one Foster Children According to Category of care and,Related  to the Children's Feelings of Worth about themselves.^ Category of Care Time of Rating * Poor Limited Good TOTALS Protection of Children Act Before 17 u 0 21 After 6 11 4 21 Juvenile Delinquent's Act Before 3 1 0 4 After 1 3 0 4 Fairbridge Before 4 2 0 6 After 2 3 1 6 * Before: Represents rating at time of admission to foster care. After: Represents rating at eighteen years of age. 1. See Appendix, pages 78 and 79. 2. See discussion in Chapter I, page 5. - 50 While a l l of the four criteria have been assigned equal weight in the assessment of social adjustment in the thirty-one cases, the question of the child's feelings about his own worth and value, is central to the other three. Without some feeling of comfort and adequacy, within himself and about himself, his ego-strength in future adult situations is impaired to a marked degree. The feelings of isolation and of vague unworthiness which are often typical of the adolescent period are undoubtedly accentuated for children who have been traumatized by earlier experiences. Don A.'s situation i l l -ustrates the factor of an adolescent's negative concept of himself. Don is a Fairbridge boy. Don A. Case (Fairbridge #1) Don A. was born out of wedlock in England. The mother's inadequacy and her promises which she was totally unable to keep, aroused a distrust and resentment which Don and his sister have carried through l i f e . "My family did not think enough of me to keep me" Don has said bitterly. Following in-stitutional care in England, Don came to Canada at ten years of age and lived for four years in institutional care. At thirteen, Don entered foster care as a "dour", likeable but rather isolated boy who daydreamed a good deal and was threatened by any suggestion of criticism by others. A superficially good i n i t i a l adjustment to foster care deteriorated within a year, and the picture of a "lone wolf" emerged. Stealing and homosexual practices were noted and may be regarded as symptoms of Don's disturbed parent-child rela*-tionship. A request for his removal by the first foster mother after two and a half years of tentative adjustment began a series of placements and replacements, runaways and minor delinquencies which has halted at the ninth substitute home. He is now working, and staying within legal limits, but his1 feelings of worthlessness and depression are very intense. The total impression gained from Don's record and from his current worker is that of a severely disturbed, deeply incapacitated person with weak ego-strengths, and a potential pattern of further delinquencies or retreat to mental illness i f stresses in adult years became too intense. Don was rated as "poor" both at the time of admission to care as well as at eighteen. Diagnostically, the acute rejection in earliest years of l i f e appear to have laid an unfavourable basis for subsequent experiences which have not altered this adolescent's negative concept of himself: intra-personally as well as in relation to his external environment. In this case, as well as in others where poor ratings were given, 51 the records showed frequent changes in workers or an inconsistent casework service being offered. George D.'s case illustrates the adjustment of an adolescent who has a more positive sense of personal worth,, George D. Case George D. was a child born of an extra-marital relationship to a narcissistic, promiscuous and unstable woman. During the twelve years in which George was with his mother, he knew three temporary fathers. His mother drank heavily, and the care he received was often sporadic. At six months he suffered bronchial pneumonia. During his early years he learned to fend for himself, and carefully protected his younger "sister as best he could. While he was grossly neglected physically, he was deeply attached to his mother, who, when infrequently sober, was remorseful and kind to the children, often over indulging them to suave her own guilt. She cried and told them how much she loved "her babies". When George was twelve, his mother left the children following an extended drinking bout. The children were found huddled in a cold house with no food on the third or fourth day. George was most reluctant to admit that his mother had gone and left him and his sister, Marie. He was deeply hurt by his mother's abandonment, and defended her vehemently, but could not discuss his feelings openly. Following a brief temporary placement, a good foster home placement was made where a strong, interested foster father was able to gain some response from George, but which was terminated after fourteen months as a result of the foster mother's illness and anticipated pregnancy. George's third foster home placement was a further unhappy experience where immature foster parents were unable to accept a foster child as part of the family when he was unable to demonstrate affection and gratitude to them for "giv-ing him a home". A, move was made at George's request to his fourth foster home, where he remained a year and a half, and while i t was superficially more satisfying for George, he became increasingly anxious to stop school, get employment and move away to live with his aged grandmother, who was his one relative who had maintained any consistent interest in him. His record indicates strong feelings of worthlessness in the early stages of foster care, and his return to his grandmother seemed to be a search for a positive identification within his own family which he had been denied in his early years with his mother, and which foster care did not appear to meet in any basic sense. George was rated as having a "poor" sense of his own worth at the time of admission, and a "limited" rating at eighteen years of age. Ernie G«, however, is a Fairbridge adolescent whose adjustment in terms of a growth and development of a sense of worth has been satisfactory. * 52 -Ernie G. Case (Fairbridge #4) Ernie's earliest years were spent fairly securely with his parents and his older brother in England, However, following his mother's death with T.B. in 1941 and his grandmother's incapacity to carry on, Ernie and his brother were institutionalized until coming to Canada in 1948 under a child immigration scheme, Ernie's family retained interest in him and believed the plan of his coming to Canada was an opportunity, and his preparation seemed relatively positive from the parents' and the child's point of view. Upon arrival in Canada, Ernie only remained in the institution for one year before placement in a foster home. During this period he found adjustment to Fair-bridge l i f e very difficult, and upon admission to foster home care was con-sidered quite disturbed. Although he was able to make a satisfactory adjust-ment in the first and only foster home placement made, Ernie experienced up-sets in his school setting. However, from the record i t appeared with the consistent help and understanding of his foster parents and his social worker that Ernie was able to acquire progressive confidence in himself in relation to others, with improved school adjustment and an added feeling of security. He participates now in a spontaneous and healthy way, enjoying club activ-ities, square dancing, and his work on the foster parents' farm. He would like to undertake some training within the Armed Services which appears well within his capacities, Ernie's record gives every indication of a well rounded, reasonably confident adolescent with a developing sense of purpose in l i f e , Ernie was rated as having a "limited" integration of his individ-uality and worth on admission, but following constructive experiences which reinforced and built upon the real strengths within himself, he was later rated as having a "good" appreciation of his own value. CRITERIA l i t THE ADOLESCENT'S WAYS OF COPING WITH REALITY. The following table gives the numerical summary of the ratings assigned for the second criteria of adjustment, which has to do with the ways in which the thirty-one adolescents have dealt with the realities of their situations.^ See Appendix, pages 78 and 79, - 53 -Table XI Summary Table Showing Comparative Ratings Assigned to Thirty- one Foster Children According to Category of Care and Related  to the Child's lavs of Coping with Reality, Category of Care Time of Rating Poor Limited Good TOTALS Protection of Children Act Before 10 10 1 21 After 10 7 21 Juvenile Delinquent's Act Before A 0 0 U After 1 3 0 U Fairbridge Before 3 3 0 6 After 2 1 3 6 The overall impression gained from this numerical summary is that there was less predominance in the "poor" ratings in this criteria than was the case with the previous one, at the point at which these children were admitted to foster care. Over one-half the total group were regarded as hav-ing unsatisfactory or negative methods of coping with the realities of their individual circumstances. It is to be expected that the "realities" which many of these children were required to meet were such that the child's nega-tive response to the situation would almost be considered natural. As was the case in several records, the disintegrating family often left the de-pendent child to cope with realities beyond the normal understanding or capa-city of the child to handle alone. Their real physical and emotional needs, and the inability of the parents to meet these needs, often resulted in the formation of undesireable mechanisms of defense on the part of these children© Thirteen of the group were rated as "limited" in the manner in which they were able to function in relation to the demands of their particular s i t -uations. Only one case appeared to evidence a basically healthy and constructive frame of reference in coping with realities. However, considerable movement can be noted in the ratings which - 5U -could be assigned at eighteen years of age. The table indicates seven adoles-cents s t i l l appeared to retain unfavourable methods in dealing with l i f e s i t -uations and problems and were rated again as "poor"; fourteen showed "limited" capacities ( a numerical increase of one from the time of admission); while ten were rated as "good" compared to one case at the time of admission. Some interesting contrasts appeared between the three categories, A number of Protection of Children Act wards (seven cases) and Fairbridge adolescents (three cases) showed movement during the period of foster care towards healthy personality development, and consequently were rated "good". The Juvenile Delinquent's Act wards who were a l l rated as "poor" upon admis-sion as a result of anti-social behaviour, showed three cases moving to "limited", and one remaining "poor"* No Juvenile Delinquent's Act ward was regarded as evidencing particularly sound methods of self-expression or social conformity. It was noted earlier that three of these youths entered foster care during adolescence, and one during pre-adolescence, a time involving greatest difficulty in forming new relationships with parental figures* While many factors would be involved in the development of hostile and aggressive behaviour patterns, the lateness of admission to foster care may be regarded as having significance in their inability to find more positive channels of self-expression based upon socially accepted standards* The following case summary illustrates the lack of movement in adjust-ment evident in one particular case studied* John H, Case (P.CA* #18) John came into the Superintendent's care as a Protection of Child-ren Act ward at ten years of age after many years of marginal physical and emotional neglect, by both his mother and father. At the time of his admis-sion, he was described as "Wild, untamed, ill-fed and ill - c l a d " * While John remained in his first foster home for four years, the reason for removal is not recorded. Five subsequent placements, interspersed with impulsive run-aways followed, with John eventually leaving to join the Royal Canadian Air Force* In his foster home placements his behaviour pattern seemed to - 55 -indicate dlfficulties in meeting l i f e situations. Although apparently of average abilities, John refused to attend school beyond Grade I X , running away again. No information is avilable regarding John's pattern in other areas, but i t was apparent from his early family history that he had been expected to utilize whatever means were at his disposal to obtain food and satisfy his basic wants, with his "reality" presenting such obstacles that escaping became his established pattern of dealing with situations when the pressures became too great. John was rated "poor" at the time of admission as well as at eigh-teen years of age in his capacity to develop constructive methods of dealing with l i f e situations. Lorrie F., however, showed decided movement in her capacity to deal with the normal demands made of her, and to develop what appears to be a basically healthy personality structure. Lorrie F. Case (P.C.A. #16) : Lorrie and her- four siblings were admitted to foster care at the time Lorrie was eight yeears of age as a result of her mother's death and her father's inability to make private plans following several temporary house-keepers. The children's care was haphazard, with continuous complaints from the community arising about "the children being undisciplined and out of con-t r o l " . Two brief foster home placements, followed by one which lasted seven years seemed to have given the framework and standards which facilitated Lorrie's sound personality development. With self-reliance and maturity, Lorrie moved from her foster home to locate employment in Vancouver, making satisfactory living arrangements, maintaining steady employment and continuing a positive interest in her brothers and sisters to whom she was attached. CRITERIA III: THE ADOLESCENT'S CAPACITY TO ENDURE FRUSTRATION. The third criteria dealt with the capacity of the adolescents to endure frustration. The extent to which they had acquired a capacity to postpone pleasure and gratification for a future objective, as well as the extent to which they have been able to view negative responses in the a t t i -tudes of people around them without feeling their basic security has been undermined, were seen as important considerations in the larger perspective of their total personality adjustment. - 56 -The following table sets forth a numerical summary of the ratings assigned for this criteria in a similar manner to those done for the f i r s t and second criteria. Table XII Summary Table Showing Comparative Ratings Assigned to Thirty- one Foster Children According to Category of Care and Related  to the Child's Capacity to Endure Frustration, Category of Care Time of Rating Poor Limited Good TOTAL Protection of Children Act Before 8 10 3 21 After 3 9 9 21 Juvenile Delinquent's Act Before U 0 0 A After 1 3 0 u Fairbridge Before 3 3 0 6 After 1 3 2 6 From this table i t can be seen that fifteen of the total group came into foster care with a "poor" capacity for frustration; thirteen with a "limited" capacity and three children with "good". At eighteen years of age, five adolescents remained with low capacities in terms of frustration; f i f -teen were "limited" and those with "good" ratings had increased to eleven. As might be expected, the four Juvenile Delinquent's Act mards who had shown difficulty in meeting the demands of reality also showed a "poor" capacity to withstand frustration at admission to care, with some shift to a "limited" rating at eighteen years. It is interesting to note that in the Protection of Children Act wards as well as Fairbridge group, the period of foster care appeared to be a time during which many of the thirty-one adoles-cents showed capacities for adjustment in this area. However, because the total group is a small sample and generalizations are not valid, two case illustrations may partially suggest the wide individual variations in t o l -erance for frustration shown in the histories examined. - 57 Angus McK„ Case (J«JJaA, # A ) Angus grew up in the slum tenements of Glasgow, Scotland during war years. From the Juvenile Court reports subsequently sent to Canada, and from Angus1 own description, his early l i f e in Scotland was regulated by whatever "jungle rules" applied, "Crowded, dirty, utterly comfortless" housing, mar-ginal income and the early and severe rejection of his mother, followed by the death of his father to whom Angus was deeply attached, represents a part of his social and emotional environment. As a pre-school boy he teamed with older men in house breakings, being boosted through transoms and acting as "lookout" while burglaries took place. By the time Angus came to Canada at thirteen years of age, his Juvenile Court record was well established in Scot-land, A boy of extremely pleasing personality, Angus was liked wherever he went despite his delinquencies, Angus was sponsored as an immigrant by relatives in Br i t i s h Columbia whose primary motive, i t later appeared, was for cheap farm labour. Within a year of his a r r i v a l he was involved in numerous breakings and enterings and placed f i r s t on probation, and later committed to the Superintendent's care when the relatives home was assessed as being un-suitable for him, A quite exceptional foster home was found where Angus be-gan to form some superficial attachments. Because he was such an extremely likeable and winning boy, subsequent delinquencies did not threaten the fos-ter parents wish to have him i n their home, Angus, however, had no capacity to withstand acting upon his impulses. With charm and poise Angus said one thing, and invariably did the other« The record gives a vivid description of his capacity to have adults believe and trust i n him even though he had just completed an extended series of thefts the same day© He had a keen sense of the dramatic, and dominated his frequent court appearances by arousing sym-pathy in an exceedingly s k i l f u l way. The extended work of courts, schools, social workers — almost everyone who had ever had contact with Angus, were insufficient to assist i n the development of some capacity to withstand frustration and to develop some internal controls. Following a sentence to the Young Offender's Unit i n Oakalla, Angus joined the Royal Canadian Air Force, deserting six months after his enlistment and served a j a i l sentence for this offense under military law. For Angus, the basic problem would appear to be a psychological one with origins in the early years of l i f e and not to be modified by the use of foster care as a resource. The mrm and consistent interest of a l l professional persons dealing with him was not ultimately effective in increasing his adaptation to internal and external pressures. As a result Angus was rated as "poor" upon his admission to foster care and also "poor" at the time he was eighteen, Florence B,, however, presents a more successful adjustment, Florence B» Case (F.C,A, #1A) Florence is an adolescent of limited intelligence. The absence of her father overseas and the promiscuity of her high strung mother who later • 5 8 -required active treatment for mental illness, created an unstable home sit-uation which ended when Florence was eleven. Following her parents permanent separation, she was placed privately in a boarding home, an arrangement which was continued under the Superintendent's care. Upon admission and for some time afterward, Florence felt easily discouraged by daily life situations, and required a great deal of reassurance and encouragement to meet the limi-tations which her unhappy past experience, as well as her actual mental capa-city imposed upon her. With the stability of one continuing foster home, even though there were indications this home did not have a particularly warm atmosphere, Florence moved towards a greater ability to face the limitations of her surroundings and to accept with less frustration, the limitations which were hers. By latter adolescence, Florence showed considerable maturity in perservering in high school until she had sufficient academic credits to take training as a practical nurse. Following this training, she has success-fully coped with a job situation, and is performing useful work which she would not have been able to do without a developing capacity to deal with the environmental and personal limitations which confronted her at the time of her admission to foster care, Florence was given consistent support and encouragement by her social worker, who attempted to minimize the somewhat high and inflexible expectations of the foster mother. For Florence, foster care did not perhaps assist her development so markedly in the other areas of personality formation being studied within the scope of this thesis. Somehow, however, the sum total of her exper-iences and relationships during foster care did free or increase latent capacities within Florence herself to achieve a useful purpose in lif e , des-pite the presence of discernible lacks in other respects. CRITERIA 17: THE ADOLESCENT'S CAPACITY TO FORM RELATIONSHIPS WITH OTHER " PEOPLE. The importance of relationships during the early dependent years of childhood has been mentioned at the outset of this chapter. The extent to which the substitute parent-child relationships have progressively en-abled personality growth in these adolescents has direct bearing upon their future capacities to live comfortably within themselves as well as to con-sistently and positively interact with others in society. To assess the extent of movement which occurred during the period of foster care, the fol-lowing table was also compiled from the rating charts on each Individual - 59 -(1) case. Table XIII A Summary Table Showing Ratings of Thirty-one Foster Child- ren According to Category of Care and Related to their  Patterns of Relationships with Others, Category of Care Time of Rating Poor Limited Good TOTAL Protection of Children Act Before 8 12 1 21 After K 8 9 21 Juvenile Delinquent's Act Before 2 2 0 A After 1 3 0 U Fairbridge Before U 2 0 6 After 2 .2 2 6 A numerical summary of the ratings assigned for the fourth criteria are set forth in the above table. While fourteen adolescents entered foster care with a "poor" and sixteen with a "limited" capacity for relationships with people in their surrounding environment, i t can be observed that as a group there appeared to be improvement during the foster care period towards greater object relationship and positive social participation. Only one child entered foster care with a history of positive inter-relationships with persons within his own family. At eighteen, however, approximately one-third of the total sample, or of Protection of Children Act wards and two Fairbridge wards had developed the essential capacity to contribute and participate in a normal way with those persons now forming a part of their current l i f e experience. Thirteen f e l l within a "limited" classif-ication, and six were rated "poor". Two of those classified as "poor", were adolescent boys whose pattern of relationship deteriorated markedly during the period of foster care. (See C l i f f W, case, page 37 Chapter II, and George D. case, page 51 Chapter III) 1, See appendix, pages 78 and 79. 60 -The following case is cited to il l u s t r a t e improvement observed i n one adolescent where foster care was used as treatment based upon a diag-nostic understanding of this adolescent's unsatisfactory pattern of relation-ships within his family c i r c l e and in his immediate environment* Reggie C. Case (J.D.A. #l) At fourteen years of age, Reggie was charged as "incorrigible" under the Juvenile Delinquent's Act by his mother and was sentenced to the Boys' Industrial School with the recommendation he be released to a foster home at discharge, under the jurisdiction of the Superintendent of Child Welfare. Reggie at this time was in open rebellion against the suffocating restrictions of his own home. Reggie's parents had been separated for many years, his father l i v i n g in another community in a common-law relationship as a result of his wife's refusal to give him a divorce. Extreme b i t t e r -ness and a protracted struggle between the father who wished a release from the unhappy marriage and the extreme dependency and punitive feelings of the mother constituted the pervading atmosphere of Reggie's childhood, Reggie, who was the only child, and his mother lived with the aged maternal grandparents, a l l of whom were s t r i c t in their religious beliefs. The mother and grandparents a l l attempted to overprotect Reggie from tlhe "sin" of the father, and had gradually withdrawn from any communication within the community. The mother's strong neurotic t i e to her own parents, which had been a major d i f f i c u l t y in her married l i f e with Reggie's father was imposed upon the boy. lectures on "goodness" and "purity" and the "wages of s i n " were frequent. The mother at times retreated for days to her darkened bedroom, suffering with headaches and numerous physical com-plaints. A series of impulsive delinquencies appeared to be Reggie's means of expressing his resentment at the r i g i d i t y of the controls placed upon him and his dissatisfaction with the unhealthy relationships that prevented his normal, healthy self-expression. Following six months in the Boys' Industrial School, a carefully selected foster home was chosen, designed to provide an atmosphere of freedom with foster parents who would be able to understand and f a c i l i t a t e gradual self-reliance and independence. During his period in the School Reggie had been given help in understanding his own family, and his place within i t . Reggie adapted f a i r l y rapidly to the ranch l i f e of his rural foster home. His behaviour improved, he became more spontaneous and out-going and evidenced an improved capacity for relationships with others around him. He showed a capacity to use freedom reasonably constructively, and developed an interest in normal outdoor a c t i v i t i e s . While improvement in relationships was noticeable, and Reggie did not find i t necessary to act out his resentment and h o s t i l i t y in impulsive anti-social behaviour, i t was by no means complete. His basic problem in relationships was with his mother, and following two and one half years in foster care, Reggie has returned to his own home and is self-employed. While work with his mother assisted her in facing her marital situation more r e a l i s t i c a l l y , and she was able to move out and take part time employment and to provide income - 61 -as well as meet her own relationship needs more satisfactorily than had been the case previously, her established dependency and over protective pattern may well hamper Reggie's development toward mature object relationship in adult years. Reggie was rated as having a "poor" foundation in relationships at the time of his admission at fifteen years of age, moving to a "limited" rat-ing at eighteen. From the record, and from actual contact with the family situation, the evidence would appear to support a limited rating even though his immediate functioning in relation to others is decidedly improved. The chronicity of the parental struggle and the problems of the oedipal period would not appear to be essentially solved for this adolescent, and without resolution, i t may be speculated Reggie will experience difficulties in forming a mature relationship leading to a successful marriage. He i s , however, an emotionally healthier, happier adolescent than he formerly was and is now steadily employed, and meeting l i f e situations with greater ease, Reggie's case represents a partial adaptation, resulting first from a know-ledge of his needs and the basis df his behaviour, as well as his family background, upon which the resources available to assist him and his family were coordinated. The way in which foster care was planned and used bore some relationship to the degree of movement that occurred during that period, Margaret P, is an adolescent who has shown even more decided growth in her capacity for relationships. A summary of her history is cited below, Margaret P. Case (P.CaA. ward #9) Margaret became a ward of the Superintendent of Child Welfare when she was twelve. Her parents had been separated for several years, and her mother, a North American Indian, had acquired an extensive reputation in the community for drunkenness and prostitution. Margaret and her four brothers and sisters were befriended by an elderly Indian woman during the mother's absences, and i t was she to whom a l l the children turned as their mother was able to take less and less responsibility for their care. At the time the case became active with the local Social Welfare Branch, the social worker enlisted the co-operation of the elderly woman the children knew as "Grannie". Over a period of several months, a plan of placement — 62 — was worked out with the married daughter of this woman, whom Margaret knew and liked. During this period the worker was under considerable community pressure to move the children precipitously, but was able to withstand this pressure u n t i l a f u l l e r knowledge of the situation was obtained. Retaining a t i e with her "adopted" Grannie had much meaning for Margaret and the place-ment with relatives preserved "a sense of family" at a time she f e l t insecure at facing an unknown situation. During the past six years, she has remained in this home, found acceptance and a s t a b i l i t y that has enabled a progressively favourable development. The previously unsatisfactory relationships with her father and mother were recognized by Margaret, and she has turned elsewhere to find some satisfactions. Her physical and emotional growth has been steady and without particular conflict about her own family. The good physical and social standards of the foster home did not present a conflict of cultures as the foster parents were also Indian. With confidence Margaret gradually participated in school act i v i t i e s and sports, and was liked and respected. At eighteen she was completing Grade XI and was enrolled to train as a nurse, which was well within her capacities to achieve. The record describes Margaret as a fresh, happy, well-adjusted g i r l whose relationships with people around her have been positive and increasingly mature in recent years. Margaret was rated as "limited" upon admission and as "good" at eighteen years of age. There is every indication that within the foster care experience she has found the basis for mature interaction in society as well as an accompanying inner personal security,, GENERAL COMMENT An examination of the summary ratings tabulated for each child for the four c r i t e r i a , presents some interesting comparisons. At the time of the childrens' admission to foster care, the adjustment, according to the four cr i t e r i a were almost t o t a l l y confined to the "limited" or "poor"  ratings. The area in which there was least adjustment or maturity was that  of the child's feeling about himself, and i t was also i n this area where least movement was shown by the time they had reached eighteen. The second, third, and fourth c r i t e r i a showed less concentration in the "poor" c l a s s i -fication, approximately two-fifths to one-half the t o t a l group f a l l i n g - 63 -within the "limited" range. In these three c r i t e r i a , however, which have reference to methods of coping with r e a l i t y (Criteria #2), capacity for frustration (Criteria #3) and patterns of relationships (Criteria #£), the numerical movement is consistently from "poor" to "limited" and "good" ratings. At eighteen, the three latter c r i t e r i a show at least one-third of  the total group had moved into what could be regarded as a satisfactory clas- s i f i c a t i o n . In the t o t a l sample, there was deterioration in adjustment i n two cases for individual c r i t e r i a , while an additional number of cases showed "no movement" during the period of foster care. These particular cases require closer examination and w i l l be discussed i n Chapter W in relation to the general effectiveness of foster care. Between the categories of care included within the t o t a l sample, which included twenty-one Protection of Children Act wards, and four Juvenile Delinquent's Act wards in addition to six Fairbridge wards, the differences in numbers preclude conclusive comment. It was noted, however, in Chapter II that Juvenile Delinquent's Act adolescents were not admitted u n t i l a later age than might be the case under the Protection of Children Act. In addition the Juvenile Delinquent's Act wards were also admitted for the precipitating reasons of their anti-social behaviour which complicated their adjustment to foster care at an age when their drives toward emancipation from parental controls would be the most intense. While the sample of Juvenile Delinquent's Act wards is admittedly small, the fact no Juvenile Delinquent's Act wards evidenced sufficiently positive adjustment to be rated "good" seems worthy of note, A further study of the relationship between these factors might strengthen the general impression gained that Juvenile Delinquent's Act wards are less able to u t i l i z e the foster care experience than children whose behaviour patterns have not become crystal-lized in aggression* CHAPTER IV  THE USE OF FOSTER CARE  FINDINGS AND IMPLICATIONS RESTATEMENT OF THE KEY QUESTION At the beginning of this study of thirty-one foster children, two questions were raised: What is the status quo of these foster children as they reach latter adolescence? Are their needs being sufficiently met through the present foster  home program to ensure a reasonable personal and social adjustment  to life in keeping with their individual capacities? These questions stem from a basic concern as to whether the present method of child care through a foster home program is adequate to meet the needs of foster children for personal growth and constructive citizenship in adult years* At the outset this has been stated as the purpose and focus of the study* AL categorical answer to the two questions is not possible from the findings which have emerged from the study* In many instances, the perform-ance and achievement of the adolescents studied could be regarded as satis-factory and desirable, while in others, the results were less satisfactory* Through foster home care, the needs of a number of adolescents have been sat-isfactorily met in some degree, while again in others, they have not been met in sufficient degree to ensure "reasonable personal and social adjust-ment to life"* The inconclusive nature of the findings to specifically answer the initial query of this thesis appears to point to a primary child - 65 -placement consideration; namely, the unique quality of each child's response to his total psycho-social experience in life* In this study, therefore, conclusive answers can only be found in the history and present functioning of each individual child. General findings arising from the analysis covered In the second and third preceding chapters will be grouped under the two stated questions, 1, What happens to foster children as they reach latter adolescence? (A) Findings arising from an analysis of Background Factors; 1, Cultural and racial differences in fifteen of the thirty-one cases gave rise to conflicts between the children, the parents and/or the communities, which complicated the children's later adjustment to foster home care, 2, Twenty-nine percent of the children were known to have been born of extra-marital relationships, (Common-law or out of wedlock,) 3, A l l histories of legally married parents showed a pattern of periodic desertions, separations, unsatisfying and even violent marital relationships, Um In only three cases out of thirty-one, (ten percent), were both parents present and functioning in some degree at the time the children were admitted to foster care, 5, Conversely, actual family breakdown, involving the absence of one or both parents existed in ninety-percent of the thirty-one cases studied, 6, In a l l cases there appeared to be sound reason for remedial care of some description at the time the children were admitted  to the Superintendent of Child Welfare's care, (B) Findings arising from an analysis of factual data about the child- ren themselves: 1, The children were admitted to foster care at the following ages: 19#35$ —. under six years of age, 19,35$ — between six and eleven years of age, 35.48$ — between twelve and fourteen years of age, 25,81$ — over fourteen years of age. 2, There did not appear to be a close relationship between a child's earlv admission to foster care and an ultimately suc-cessful personal and social adjustment. - 66 -3* The histories of children admitted during adolescence showed there was considerable difficulty in adjusting to foster home care* 4* The number of foster home placements ranged from one to eleven* 5* The general intelligence ratings indicated approximately sixty-five percent f e l l within average or higher ranges* 6* Fifty percent of the total group had achieved Grade ten or higher educational qualifications* Fifty percent were child-ren with borderline or defective intelligence, or who were so disturbed emotionally they were unable to use available educa-tional facilities* 7* Thirteen adolescents, out of school and engaged in employment were in unskilled or seasonal jobs, 8* The health and general physical well-being of these children appeared well looked after during foster care, with the not-able exception of consistent dental care, 2* Are their needs being sufficiently met through the present foster home  urogram to ensure a reasonable personal and social adjustment to l i f e , in  keeping with their individualcapacities? (A) Findings arising from the estimated measurement of adjustment; 1, Problems in some areas of personal and social adjustment were common to some degree in a l l adolescents at the time they entered foster homo care* 2* Strong feelings of inferiority and lack of personal worth were present In a l l children at the time they entered foster home care* 3* The least movement during the period in foster home care was in the same area of the adolescents' feelings of inferiority and lack of worth about themselves* 4, Greater movement was shown during the period in foster care in the areas of the adolescent's capacity to cope with the realities of their particular situations; their capacity to endure frustrations In daily living; and their capacity to form positive relationships with their environment. LIMITATIONS OF THE STUDY 1* The present study was confined to thirty-one children who were eighteen years of age in 1954> and the findings enumerated above, are valid only in the context of the cases examined. 2. Divisional files in the Child Welfare Division did not give complete descriptions of the behaviour, attitudes and adjust-ment of the selected group, or of the worker's making those - 67 -observations which were contained in the records* 3* The criteria used for measurement of adjustment were not com-plete or entirely definitive in assessing psychological growth and development in adolescents, A* The perspective of the study was limited by the impractical-ity of obtaining a l l district files on the adolescents, as well as the files of foster parents in whose homes they had been placed. From these, a fuller appreciation of their exper-iences and behaviour would have resulted* 5* A limitation in the time available for completion of the study prevented attempting to obtain additional information through first-hand observation and interviewing of the adolescents, their foster parents and social workers* The presence of this additional information would have added validity to the findings arrived at within this study, and would have permitted the exploration of further methods in evaluative research* THE STRENGTHS OF THE STUDY 1* The co-operation of the Child Welfare Division and their interest in making their full material available for study was of val-uable assistance* 2* Available information was gathered according to a standard-ized method of procedure* 3* The material gathered was uniformly tabulated* A* A first-hand knowledge of six of the adolescents in the group studied added to the knowledge available in the divisional records, 5* The criteria used to measure adjustment were regarded as valid insofar as they went* This appeared to be substantiated by the case material that wasused, 6, The present study attempted exploration in measurement of adjustment in adolescence according to theories of personality growth and development* This type of evaluative research may provide a basis for more definitive studies in this field of child placement at some time in the future* A COMPARISON WITH A SIMIIAR STUDY A, previous study, "How Foster Children Turn Out", done by A,L* Langdale in 1951^ dealt with the adjustment of forty-two wards of the 1* langdale, Arthur Leslie, "How Foster Children Turn Ont". unpublished thesis. School of Social Work, University of British Columbia* Vancouver, B* C„'l951. - 68 -Children's Aid Society of Vancouver who were twenty-one years of age at the time the study was initiated. This was the only available and comparable analysis to the present one in terms of focus upon the adjustment of adoles-cent foster children. In both studies similar factual data were analyzed on the basis of numerical ratings and case illustration* Briefly, the emphasis in this prior study was upon conversion of qualitative data into quantitative measures* In the present study, the tabulation of factual data was more generally presented as a background of information which would assist in understanding the measurement of the adolescent's psycho-social development according to four set criteria* Descriptive rather than numerical values in this respect were used* In terms of method, the innovation attempted within the present study has been a reconnaissance in the adaptation of research methods to dynamic concepts of behaviour and adjustment in adolescence* In this respect, the contribution of the thesis done by A»L. Langdale,^ as well as the one (2) of Miss LJU* Carscadden in evaluating "levels of maturity" in adult clients, have proved of valuable assistance in this undertaking* The findings in both studies of adolescent foster children suggest many similarities* The implications, however, which arise from the two studies, differ somewhat in emphasis, resulting partly from the criteria used for measurement* The study Initially done on Children's Aid Stociety wards analyzed available data with the purpose of building from it a pattern* In the present study, the reverse procedure was followed* That is, theo-retical concepts were established as "constants", and the available material 1* Iangdale, Arthur Leslie, "How Foster Children Turn Out", unpublished thesis, School of Social Work, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, B. C, 1951* 2* Carscadden, Lillian M., "The Client-Worker Relationship", unpublished thesis, School of Social Work, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, B. C., 1951* - 69 -on the adolescent's behaviour was rated according to three "levels of adjust-ment" within this framework. Because both studies were of an exploratory nature, and were done in an area where scientific methods present many dif-ficulties in application, neither study could be regarded as wholly satis-factory, RECOMMENDATIONS FOR FURTHER RESEARCH. In the course of preparing, tabulating and writing the present study, many questions arose which impinge upon the issue of foster care as the means of meeting the needs of older foster children. Many of these issues, while unsubstantiated by the findings within the scope of this study, were suggestive of important aspects of evaluating how effective foster care is in relation to wider numbers of children in a l l age groupings, and are factors which might be considered by others attempting measurement in child welfare services. Some of these recommendations are listed below, but not neces-sarily in sequence of importance, 1, A review of admissions to foster care, with the emphasis upon whether an individual diagnosis and treatment plan was formulated at the time the child came into foster home care. This consideration arose particularly in reference to what seem-ed to be apparent "failures" in cases where foster home care was not the resource which could meet the child's needs at the particular time i t was  used. The usefulness of such resources as Various forms of group care could be seen as a valuable supplementary service to children who were emo-tionally unable to use foster care constructively. 70 -2, A review and analysis of the placement histories of children  now in foster care on a wider sampling basis in a l l age ranges to determine whether foster care is meeting the needs of each individual child. In this recommendation, the inconclusive nature of the present study suggests the necessity for more intensive and wider study of the program in an effort to Identify and rectify limitations in present func-tioning, and to develop other ways of supplementing the resources avail-able for care of dependent children* 3, A study and analysis of the methods of recruitment. selection and use of foster homes in child welfare ser-vices in British Columbia* The present study did not include the extremely important con-tributions of foster parents to the total adjustment of the foster child. Neither did it include an assessment of the skills of the social worker in the use of a particular home for a particular child* Further study might aid In clarifying the reasons why "successes" as well as "failures" occur, and thereby sharpening the skill and understanding use of this major re-source for child care throughout British Columbia* It might assist in appreciating why there is such a wide range in the numbers of foster home placements, (In the present study, the range was from one to eleven place-ments. In the study done by A.X, Iangdale on Children's Aid Society wards, the range was from one to sixteen placements,) Am An analysis of the frequency and quality of the case- work service rendered to children in foster homes, including such factors as consistency of contact, train-ing and turnover of social work staff* The importance of these considerations was seen in the frequent changes of workers on cases, as well as such factors as geographical Inac-cessibility in northern areas of the province, (The range in number of - 71 -workers varied from one to nine on those cases where the information was available* In the thesis "How Foster Children Turn Out", the range in numbers of workers varied from one to nineteen)* 5* Further research in determining definitive criteria of  adjustment for developmental phases within the total  growth process. 6* An examination of the extent of casework help offered  to parents in attempting to reinforce the parent's capacity to hold the family unit together before place-ment of children amy from the home becomes necessary* CONCLUSION. The findings of this study have indicated foster home care has been a meaningful and re-constructive experience for a number of the thirty-one adolescents* The encouragement and knowledge derived from the appro-priate use of foster care as a resource to meet the needs of children* pro-vides a stimulus toward further study in an effort to minimize its limi-tations* A contemporary leader in social work has said, "The greatest gift is to enable another to realize his own capacities for change and growth"*^) Through wise and thoughtful use, foster care may achieve this goal even more fully in future years. 1* Hamilton, Gordon, Theory and Practice of Social Casework. (2nd edition) Columbia University Press, New York, 1951, page 22* - 72 « APPENDICES - 73 -APPENDIX A.  Sample Information Sheet, CHILD WELFARE DIVISION SURVEY OF PLANNING- FOR CHILDREN [Name Parents 1 Names Date admitted Birthdate "Status Reason for coming into care District Office plan at time child reaches 18 years Physi ca-1— abno rmai i t i e s Number and length of placements Social adjustment of child and expected success i n getting along Parents 1 present circumstances Special resources used or expected to "be used; any additional scholastic or vocational training required  What he/she is actually doing, July 1, 195 Intelligence Rating [School grade reached Supervising Agency No. siblings in care No. siblings not i n care Racial Origin Religion Responsibility Form C¥-5^ Appearance a^d P e r s o n a l i t y : (Over) B e h a v i o r : E x t en t o f Case wo r k : . Nuoiber o f I V o r k e r s : _ . U n r e s o l v e d A r e a s i n P e r s o n a l i t y f o r m a t i i a n : S t r e n g t h s and w e a k n e s s e s : . .. . . Summary and O v e r a l l a s s e s s m e n t o f the A d o l e s c e n t and t h e Plannins;-'Done : -- 74 * APPENDIX B. Work Chart Showing Marital Status. Racial Origins and Religion  of the parents: Also Years of Contact between Parents and  Thirty-one Children in Foster Care. CHILD Marital Status* of Parents FATHER MOTHER Racial Origin Religion Years of Contact Racial Origin Religion Years of Contact P.C .A. Wards 1. C.L. A.S. Prot. 10 CE. Prot. 10 2. s . n . R.C. 5 A.S. R.C 6 3. s . A.S. Prot. A G.E. R.C. U 4. w. BELO. Prot. 16 N.K. Prot. N.K. 5. w. CE. Prot. 16 A.S. Prot. N.K. 6. a . A..S. Prot. 8 A.S. Prot. 8 7. s . A.S. Prot. Under 1 A..S. Prot. Under 1 8. P.D. N.A.I. R.C. 9 NJk..i. R.C 10 9. C.L. Chilean Indian Prot. U N.A.I. R.C. 12 30. C.L. A.S. R.C. N.K. MIX. R.C. 5 11. G.L. SCAND. Prot. N.K. N.A.I. Prot. 11 12. s . CE. R.C. 9 C .E. R.C. N.K. 13. : C.L. A.S. R.C Under 1 R.C. Under 1 14. s . A.S. Prot. 5 A.S. Prot. 10 15. C.L. MIX. R.C. N.K. MIX. R.C. 12 16. w. A.S. Prot. 8 A^. Prot. 8 17. s . A.S. Prot. Under 2 MIX. Prot. 2 18. M. A.S. Prot. 10 A.S. Prot. 10 19. DJ). MIX. Prot. 11 MIX. Prot. U - 75 -APPENDIX B (Continued) CHILD Marital Status* of Parents FATHER MOTHER Racial Origin Religion Tears of Contact Racial Origin Religion Years of Contact 20. C.L. A.S. Pent. 8 A..S. Pent. 5 21. w. A.J5:. Prot. Under 2 A.S. Prot. Under 2 <T*D.A. Wards 22. s. A.S. Prot. N.K. AJ3. Prot. 23* s - DUTCH Prot. N.K. SCAND. Prot. N.K. 2A. w. SIAV. R.C. 11 SIAV. R.C N.K. 25. w. A.S. Prot. 11 A.S. Prot. 13 Fair-bridge Wards 26. Sgle. A.S. Prot. None A*S. Prot. Under 6 27. S* A.S. Prot. A A.S. Prot. A 28. " D. A..S. Prot. 3 A.S. Prot. 11 29. w. A.S. Prot. 12 A.S. Prot. A 30. s. A.S. Prot. 5 Prot. 6 31. Sgle. A.S. Prot. N.K. AJ5. Prot. N.K. KEY: M Marital Status: (at the time of commencement of wardship, or admission to foster care, or previous institutionalization* especially Fairbridge wards.) M. - Married and living together S. - Married, but living separately D. - Divorced* Sgle. - Single. C. L. - Common-law W. • Widowed or Widower D. D. - both parents deceased N.K* - not known - 76 -APPENDIX B (Continued) Racial Origins A..S. - Anglo-Saxon (British) Scand. - Scandinavian (Norwegian, Danish, Finnish, Swedish) CJE. - Central European (Polish, Czechoslovakian) Slav* - Slavic (Yugoslavian) N.A.I. - North American Indian It, - Italian Belg, - Belgian Mix, • Mixed (backgrounds of divergent races -( e.g. English and N«A,I. ( e.g. N.&.I. and Chilean Indian,) N.K. •» Not Known ReiififtoRs Prot, - Protestant (Including Church of England, Baptist, ( United Church, Presbyterian) R.C. - Roman Catholic Pent. - Pentecostal Mixed - Combinations of religions maintained by the parents following marriage. m 77 -APPENDIX C. Work Chart Showing Length of Contact Prior to Admission to  Foster Care Between Parents and Children in Fifteen Cases  Where Cultural Factors Appeared to he Significant*. CASE Sex of Parent Length of Contact Not Known 0-5 6-10 11-16 1. Father X Mother X 2. Father X Mother X 3. Father X Mother X U. Father X Mother X 5. Father X Mother X 8. Father X Mother X 9. Father X Mother X 10. Father X Mother X ! ! • Father X Mother X 12, Father X Mother X 15. Father X Mother X 19. Father X Mother X 23. Father X Mother X 24. Father X Mother X 25. Father X Mother X i - 78 -APPENDIX D. Work Chart Showing Ratines at the Time of Admission to Foster Care and  at Eighteen Years of Aee of the Thirty-one Foster Children According to  the Degree of Adjustment Achieved in Four Areas of Personality Development., P.G.A. Wards G R I T E R I A I II III IV; Poor Lim« Good Poor Lim. Good Poor Lim, Good Poor Lim. Good 1 Before X X X X After X X X X 2 Before X X X X After X X X X 3 Before X X X X After X X X X A Before X X X X After X X X X 5 Before X X X X After X X X X 6 Before X X X X After X X X X 7 Before X X X X After X X X X 8 Before X X X X After X X X X 9 Before X X X X After X X X X 10 Before X X X X After X X X z 11 Before X X X X After X X X X 12 Before X X X X After X X X X 13 Before X X X X After X X X X 14 Before X X X X After X X X X 15 Before X X X X After X X X X 16 Before X X X X After X X X X - 79 -APPENDIX D (Continued) P.C.A. Wards C R I T E R I A I II III D7 Poor Llm. Good Poor Lin* Good Poor Mm. Good Poor Mm. Good 17 Before X X X X After X X X X 18 Before X X X X After X X X X 19 20 Before X X X X After X X X X Before X X X X After X X X X 21 Before X X X X After X X X X J J) .A. WARDS 1 Before X X 1 X X After X X X X Before X X X X . After X X X X 3 Before X X X X After X X X X A Before X X X X After X X X X Fairbridge Wards 1 Before X X X X After X X X X 2 Before X X X X After X X X X 3 Before X X X X After X X X X A Before X X X X After X X X X 5 Before X X X X After X X X X 6 Before X X X X After X X X X • * 80 APPENDIX D. (Continued) KEY: CRITERIA: I. What is the adolescent's feeling about himself?-- his own value and worth? II. What ways of coping with reality has he adopted,? HE. What is his ability to endure frustration? IV. What has been his pattern of relationships with others? RATINGS: Poor Limited Good "BEFORE" Represents rating at the time of admission to foster care, "AFTER" Represents rating at eighteen years of age. - 81 -APPENDIX B. BIBLIOGRAPHY BOOKS Bowlby, John, Maternal Pare and Mental Health. World Health Organization Palais des Nations, Geneva, 1952* Clifton, Eleanor & Hollis, Florence, (editors) Child Therapy — A Case- work Symposium. Family Service Association of America, New York, 1948. de Schweinitz, Karl, England's Road to Social Security. University of Pennsylvania Press, Philadelphia, 1943* French, David G#, An Approach to Measuring Results in Social Work. Columbia University Press, New York, 1952. Garrett, Annette, Interviewing: Its Principles and Methods. International Universities Press, 1946• Goode, William J», and Hatt, Paul K„ Methods in Social Research. McGraw-Hill, Book Co., Inc., New York, 1952. Hamilton, Gordon, Principles of Social Case Recording. Columbia University Press, New York, 1946. Hamilton, Gordon, Theory and Practice of Social Casework;. (2nd edition), Columbia University Press, New York, 1951. Hunt, J. McV.j Blenkner, Margaret; Kogan, Leonard S,, Testing Results in  Social Casework. Family Service Association of America, New York, 1950. Hutchinson, Dorothy, In Quest of Foster Parents. Columbia University Press, New York, 1943. Johns, Ray and DeMarche, David F., Community Organization and Agency  Responsibility. Association Press, New York, 1951» Josselyn, Irene M., The Adolescent and His World. Family Service Asso-ciation of America, New York, 1952. Josselyn, Irene M«, Psycho-Social Development of Children. Family Service Association of America, New York, 1948. -82 -APPENDIX E. (Continued) Kasius, Cora (ed.), "A Comparison of Diagnostic and Functional Casework  Concepts". Family Service Association of America, New York, 1950. Kasius, Cora (ed.), Principles and Techniques in Social Casework^  Selected Articles 1940--1950, Family Service Association of America, New York, 1950, 'Social Work as Hy"flp Relations " f Anniversary Papers of the New York School of Social Work and the Community Service Society of New York, Columbia University Press, New York, 1949. Wertham, Fredric, Dark Legend. Doubleday and Company, Inc., Garden City, New York, 1950. Witmer, Helen, Psychiatric Interviews with Ghildrenf The Commonwealth Fund, New York, 1946. Young, Leontine, Out of Wedlock. McGraw-Hill Book Company, Inc., New York, 1954. ARTICLES and PAMPHLETS Ackerman, Nathan W., "Mental Hygiene and Social Work, Today and Tomorrow", Social Casework. Vol, XXXVI, Number 2, (February, 1955) page 63. Ackerman, Nathan W., "The Diagnosis of Neurotic Marital Interaction", Social Casework. Vol..XXXV, Number 4, (April 195A Page 139. Angus, Anne M., Children's Aid Society of Vancouver B.C-. 1901—1951. Biestek, Felix, t&n Analysis of the Casework Relationship", Social  Casework. Vol. XXXV, Number 2, (February, 1954X Biestek, Felix, "The Non-Judgemental Attitude, Social Casework. Vol. XXXIV, Number 6, (June 1953). Black, Bertram J., Tools and Techniques of Administration", Social  Casework. Vol. XXXI, Number 6, (June 1950) page 223. Bowers, Swithun, Social Work and Human Problems", Social Caseworkf Vol. XXXV, Number 5, (May 1954) page 187. Britton, Clare, "Casework Techniques in Child Care Services", Social  Casework. Vol. XXXVI, Number 1, (January 1955), page 3. Canadian Welfare Council, Child Protection in Canada,. June, 1954. Dick, Kenneth, "Toward Earlier Placement for Adoption", Social Casework. Vol. XXXVI, Number 1, (January 1955) page 22. - 83 -APPENDIX E. (Continued) Elliot, Martha M., The Family Today: Its Needs and Opportunities% Soeial Casework, Vol. XXXIV. Number 2, (February 1953). Elliott, Sarah Anne & Keith-Lucas, Alan, "A Mother's Movement Toward Responsibility During her Child's Placement", Soeial Casework. Vol..XXXV, Number A, (April 195A), page 166. Finlay, Douglas, "Loss of Identity", Concerning Families and Children. Canadian Welfare Council, Vol. I l l , Number 7, (March 1955) Guides to Agency Research. Report of the Subcommittee on Agency Research, Family Service Association,of America, New York, New York, 1950. Hamilton, Gordon, "Basic Concepts in Social .Casework", Journal of Social  Casework. (July 1937) page 148. Hamilton, Gordon, "Self-Awareness in Professional Education", Social  Casework. Vol. XXXV, Number 9, (November 1954) page 371. Hirsohn, Sid, "The Role of the Male Caseworker with the Adolescent Boy", Soeial Casework. Vol. XXX. Number 1, (January 1950). Irvine, May, "Communication and Relationship in Social Casework", Social  Casework. Vol..XXXVI, Number 1, (January 1955) page 13. Josselyn, Irene M0, "The Family as a Psychological Unit", Social Casework. Vol..XXXIV, Number 10, (October 1953). Lehrman, Louis J„ "The Logic of Diagnosis", Social Casework. Vol, XXXV, Number 5, (May 1954) page 192. Lsrner, Samuel H., "Effects of Desertion on Family Life", Social Casework. Vol. XXXV, Number 1, (January 1954), page 3« Young, Kimball, "What Strong Family Life Means in Our Society", Social  Casework. Vol. XXXIV, Number 8, (October 1953). Young, Leontine, "Placement from the Child's Viewpoint", Social Casework. Vol.. XXXI, Number 6, (June 1950), page 250. 


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