AFCARS Technical Bulletins

The Children’s Bureau has prepared, issued, and revised the Technical Bulletins (TBs) to supplement the official guidance and assist title IV-E agencies in developing, implementing, and maintaining their AFCAR system. We initially issued fourteen technical bulletins, but have now consolidated them in to 11 TBs. TBs that addressed the same subject were combined into one technical bulletin, but their content largely remains the same. The changes reflect technical corrections or modifications to make the information more clear. Each TB contains a footnote reflecting the previous dates of issuance and TB number.

Technical Bulletin #1 - Data Elements - This TB provides overview information on the Adoption and Foster Care Analysis and Reporting System (AFCARS) foster care and adoption data elements.

Technical Bulletin #2 - Disability Information - This TB provides title IV-E agencies with information on how to correctly map certain diagnosed conditions from an agency's information system to the Adoption and Foster Care Analysis and Reporting System (AFCARS).

Technical Bulletin #3 - Frequency Report - This TB provides information on how to interpret the Adoption and Foster Care Analysis and Reporting System (AFCARS) frequency report and how to install and execute the AFCARS Frequency Report Utility, Version 2.1.

Technical Bulletin #4 - Data Compliance - This TB provides guidance on the standards used to determine compliance on the semi-annual Adoption and Foster Care Analysis and Reporting System (AFCARS) data files.

Technical Bulletin #5A - Data Quality - This TB provides information to title IV-E agencies on how to interpret the data quality reports generated by the Federal AFCAR System on each semi-annual AFCARS data submission.

Technical Bulletin #5B - Data Quality Utility, Version 2.1 - This TB is intended to give a more technical description of how the Data Quality Utility works.

Technical Bulletin #6 - Data Extraction - This TB addresses the extraction of data for submission to the Federal Adoption and Foster Care Analysis and Reporting System (AFCARS).

Technical Bulletin #7 - Encryption Guidelines and Algorithms - This TB provides title IV-E agencies with guidance in encrypting record numbers in the Adoption and Foster Care Analysis and Reporting System (AFCARS) data file submissions.

Technical Bulletin #8 - AFCARS Encryption/Decryption Utility: C Version 2.1 - This TB provides guidance for installing and executing the Adoption and Foster Care Analysis and Reporting System (AFCARS) Encryption/Decryption Utility.

Technical Bulletin #9 - Data File Format - This TB supplements information in 45 CFR 1355.40, and the Appendices to Part 1355 by providing additional guidance on the AFCARS file format and the proper naming convention to be used for AFCARS files.

Technical Bulletin #10 - Footnote Guidance - This TB provides information on the types of information that title IV-E agencies may wish to include in explaining their Adoption and Foster Care Analysis and Reporting System (AFCARS) data and provides the format for submitting footnotes.

Technical Bulletin #11 - Electronic Data Transmission - This TB provides information on the Children’s Bureau’s electronic data transfer (EDT) protocols for the transmission of AFCARS data files by title IV-E agencies.