This report provides an overview of results from a 2018 national data collection on the views of children and young people in out-of-home care. Updated data for 8 indicators under the National Standards for out-of-home care are presented.

Data from a sample of children aged 8–17 who were under the care of the relevant minister or chief executive in the 8 states and territories are presented. Jurisdictions collected these data as part of their local case management processes during the period 1 January 2018 to 30 June 2018.

Key findings are:

  • 92% of children reported feeling both safe and settled in their current placement.
  • 2 in 3 children (66%) reported that they usually get to have a say in what happens to them, and people usually listen to what they say.
  • A similar percentage of children (65%) reported that they received adequate support (from their carer or someone else) to participate in sporting, cultural or community activities (excludes Western Australia).
  • Most children (94%) reported feeling close to at least 1 family group: that is, the people they live with now (coresident family), family members they do not live with (non-coresident family) or both.
  • Regarding contact with non-coresident family, 72% of children reported satisfaction with 1 or more contact types (that is, visiting, talking or writing) (excludes Western Australia).
  • 9 in 10 children (90%) reported that they had at least some knowledge of their family background.
  • Nearly all children (97%) reported that they had a significant adult; that is, an adult who cares about what happens to them now and in the future.
  • Nearly 2 in 3 young people (64%) aged 15–17 reported that they were getting as much help as they needed to make decisions about their future. A further 26% reported that they were getting some help but wanted more.
  • Across most indicators, children living in residential care tended to report less positive experiences of care than children living in other arrangements (foster care, relative/kin care or ‘other’).
  • For indicators that had comparable data for the 2015 and 2018 surveys, there was little, if any, difference between years.

This report is complemented by more detailed online supplementary data tables.