Kinship foster care has recently become the new main form of Korean out-of-home care, and has reached similar usage proportions as the more traditional form, institutional care. To compare the effectiveness of the two care types, we focused on adolescents' developmental outcomes. We also examined changes over time in the outcomes and group differences in the changes. We analyzed five-year longitudinal data from 244 adolescents who participated in the Panel Study on Korean Children in Out-of-Home Care. A repeated measures Analysis of Variance (ANOVA) was used as the major analytic method. The study results revealed that the kinship group was better off at the baseline for covariates than was the institution group for almost every development measure. However, the group differences observed at baseline disappeared or reversed in direction, which indicated better longitudinal outcomes for the institution group. In terms of changes over time, self-esteem and delinquency of all adolescents, no matter to which group they belong, changed in a positive way. However, there were no group differences in the patterns of changes. Based on these results, we discuss the limitations of the Korean out-of-home care system, such as the lack of assessment and monitoring, and support for kin caregivers. Ethical approval We obtained informed consent from the participating adolescents and Sookmyung Women's University IRB (the first through the third wave panel research) and Ewha Womans University IRB (the fourth and the fifth wave) approval before we began this research.
- Foster care
- Kinship care
- Korean out-of-home care
- Longitudinal developmental outcomes