106: Contouring Negative Spaces: Attending to Underrepresented Topics in Research on Foster and Adoptive Families


Cassandra P. Vazquez; Reihonna Frost; Morgan E. Cooley; Kelly Munly; Bethany Willis Hepp; Rachel H. Farr; Katherine Allen

10:00 AM
11:15 AM
Session #
Session Type
Session Focus
  • Research
Organized By
  • Family Policy
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About the Session

Concurrent Sessions 1 - (NBCC CE Credit: #1 hr and Conference Attendance Credit: #1 hr)

106-01: Parent-School Involvement, Student School Engagement, and Academic Achievement in Children Adopted From Foster Care by Lesbian and Gay Parents
Cassandra P. Vázquez, Rachel H. Farr, Abbie E. Goldberg

106-02: "You Can't Really Tell ... She Doesn't Really Look Like That": Changes in Racial Identification Over Time in Mixed-Race Adopted Youth
Reihonna L. Frost, Abbie E. Goldberg, Melissa H. Manley, Nora M. McCormick, Haylie J. Virginia

106-03: Foster Parenting and Youth-Caregiver Relationships: Comparing Outcomes of Youth in Transracial and In racial Foster Families
Morgan E. Cooley, Armeda Wojciak, Brittany P. Mihalec-Adkins, Heather M. Thompson

106-04: Mechanisms of Family in Adult Foster Care
Kelly Munly, Katherine R. Allen, Karen A. Roberto

Discussant: Bethany N. Willis Hepp
Chair: Rachel H. Farr



Aligned with the conference theme, this 4-paper symposium addresses a series of understudied topics about the experiences of diverse adoptive and foster families in the U.S. From developmental, family systems, and life course theoretical perspectives, these mixed-method studies highlight (1) school engagement and young children's outcomes among foster-to-adopt families headed by lesbian and gay parents, (2) parent perceptions of children's racial/ethnic identity among adoptive families diverse in race and parental sexual orientation, (3) parent-child relationships and adolescent outcomes among transracial foster families, and (4) expanding notions of family among providers who care for adults in residential care (i.e., adult foster care). Each paper offers findings informative to practice and policy, particularly regarding intervention and support relevant to school settings, transracial adoption, and adult foster care.

-- To describe experiences of diverse foster/adoptive families using broad developmental and life course theoretical perspectives.
-- To analyze diverse foster/adoptive family experiences from contexts of child welfare policies.
-- To compare and contrast underrepresented perspectives in fostering/adoption (e.g., lesbian and gay parents, transracial fostering, adults in foster care), contouring "negative spaces" of family.

Subject Codes: foster care, adoption, diversity
Population Codes: foster child, Multiracial or ethnic, lgb+
Method and Approach Codes: diversity, regression: linear (simple, multiple, hierarchical), qualitative methodology


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