Click here to view the Government's Adoption Reform Programme update given in December 2012 which includes seminar dates for 2013.

Department for Education -
Adoption Reform Programme update December 2012

The Government wants more adults to come forward to adopt and to this end a comprehensive package of support for people who want to adopt has been announced by the Prime Minister.

The Government is:

  • making sure adoptive parents get the same rights as biological parents when it comes to maternity and paternity leave;
  • giving adoptive parents the right to take time off work to meet the children they may adopt;
  • encouraging adoption activity days, as pioneered by the British Association of Adoption and Fostering. They allow face to face meetings between prospective adopters and the children who are waiting to be adopted;
  • looking at options for opening up the Adoption Register to approved prospective adopters;
  • introducing pilots so that adoptive parents will be in charge of personal budgets that would be otherwise be spent by councils; and
  • establishing a National Gateway for Adoption. This will provide a single point of enquiry for anyone interested in adoption.

This new support builds on a range of measures that are helping children who have been adopted.

The second round of adoption scorecards was published in November . These measure how quickly local authorities are finding an adoptive home for children.

We have also published draft legislation to make sure that black and minority ethnic children are not left waiting in care longer than necessary - because adults want a perfect ethnic match - and another to encourage local authorities to apply ‘Fostering for Adoption’ – whereby adoptive parents who are waiting for the court to make a decision about whether a child should be adopted can foster the child in the meantime.

A response to the Government’s call for views on proposals to reduce delay because of the search for a sibling group placement and on proposals around contact will be published shortly.

The Consultation on Adoption and Fostering Proposals closed on Friday 7 December. Thank you to all who submitted a response and the findings from it will be available in the New Year.

We are planning a series of seminars taking place around the country in February and March 2013. These seminars will provide an overview of the adoption reform programme, including the recruitment and assessment of prospective adopters, and the National Gateway for Adoption. The seminars will be targeted at local authority Heads of Service, Assistant Directors and VAA managers.

Beginning in Sheffield on 1 February 2013, each region will have its own dedicated seminar. As London has a greater number of local authorities we will be holding two seminars to enable attendance from all the London boroughs. Download the Adoption Reform Programme seminar dates.

Further information and a booking form will be circulated in early in January and will be placed on the DfE website. Any queries regarding the seminars can be submitted via this mailbox

Please be aware that numbers of attendees at each event will be limited. There will be further events organised throughout 2013.

Department for Education