ADOPTION TERMS

  • Bi-racial: A child born of two different races, one of them Black
  •  Closed Adoption: A confidential, or non-identifying, adoption. There is no contact between the adoptive family and the birth parents.
  • Hard-to-place child: The child is not handicapped, but may be difficult to place due to other factors, such as being over the age of six, part of a sibling group, or part of an ethnic minority in which there is a scarcity of adoptive parents.
  • Identified or Designated Adoption: The birth parents and the adoptive couple come in contact with one another, go together to a licensed agency and ask for the services of that professional to make sure that all requirements and regulations are met.
  • Independent or Private Adoption: The birth parents and the adoptive couple find each other through advertising or through personal referral, usually by a mutual friend or acquaintance. They contact a lawyer who handles all the legal work necessary for an adoption. An agency is not involved and no other services are provided.
  • Mixed-race: A child whose birth parents are of different ethnic backgrounds.
  • Networking: Couples advertise, send letters, or circulate resumes to locate a birth mother.
  • Open Adoption: Adoption with communication between the adoptive family and the birth family. The amount of contact varies, from a mere exchange of letters to birth parents’ active involvement in the adoptive family.
  • Private Agency: A privately operated business that is licensed by the state which operates to conduct adoptive parent home studies and/or place children for adoption. These agencies are principally supported by the fees they receive from adoptive parents.
  • Public Agency: Operated by the county or state in which they are located and supported by tax dollars. The main function is to find homes for children for whom the county or state has assumed responsibility. These agencies are usually responsible for most special-needs cases.
  • Special-needs Child: A child who is disabled or handicapped in some way, such as having a physical or mental disability, emotional problems or other serious medical needs.
  • Transracial Adoption: The adoptive couple adopts a child who comes from a different racial or ethnic background.