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The city has failed to cut ties to the private foster care agencies that performed worst on yearly evaluations of child safety and placement, something it has pledged to do for several years.

Nearly 1,300 children have been left in the care of two of the poorest agencies, Miracle Makers and St. Christopher's, the New York Times reported in Tuesday editions.

Every year since 2000, Miracle Makers has scored among the lowest of the 36 private foster care agencies open in the city. St. Christopher's has had declining scores since 2001, and in 2003 its scores overall were last.

Foster care agencies in New York are scored in categories such as child safety and well-being.

John B. Mattingly, who was hired as administrator for children's services commissioner about two months ago, told the Times his tenure has not been long enough to understand why so many children are still placed with those agencies. However, he did say the city will announce a plan to reduce the number of agencies that get city contracts.

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