SOLIHULL ranks as one of the ten worst local authorities in the country for children being adopted from care, a report has revealed.
Last year just seven of the borough’s 229 children in care were adopted, according to an Adoption Agency Annual report, with 169 leaving care in total.
This actually represented a 1.1 per cent increase on the borough’s three year average of three per cent.
For children aged over five, this figure dropped to zero.
Councillor Nick Stephens (Lab, Chelmsley Wood) told last week’s children and young people meeting: “It’s our over-fives which are a real cause for concern.
“We have a lot of older young people in our care.”
The report stated the council was “concerned that the number of children being adopted in Solihull is low.”
Of the few adopted, Solihull ranked in the top ten in three year averages of time taken from children entering care and moving in with an adoptive family - taking 420 days.
But last year this shot up to 620 days, with only two children placed within the 21 month deadline.
Coun Joe Tildesley, cabinet member for children and young people, said adoption was not always the most suitable option for children in care.
“It is a concern that, at three per cent, the amount of children adopted in Solihull is low, however it is important to note that figures for the borough are affected by having a disproportionate amount of unaccompanied asylum-seeking children, and the fact that we have a relatively low amount of children in care generally.
“In Solihull, we work hard to ensure the best outcome for every child and young person in our care.
‘‘In some cases, adoption is not the best outcome for a particular child and our staff do an excellent job in finding the right solution for every individual case.”