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Foster Care Information

FOSTER CARE

Children and youth in foster care represent one of the most vulnerable student subgroups in this country. Studies find children in foster care are much more likely than their peers to struggle academically and fall behind in school.  Students in foster care at age 17 are also less likely to graduate from high school, with only 65 percent graduating by age 21 compared to 86 percent among all youth ages 18 to 24.

Children in foster care experience much higher levels of residential and school instability than their peers; one study showed that 75 percent of children in foster care made an unscheduled school change in one school year, compared to less than 40 percent for children not in foster care.  Unplanned school changes may be associated with delays in children’s academic progress, leaving highly mobile students potentially more likely to fall academically behind their less mobile peers. Children experiencing this type of instability, including many students in foster care, are thus more likely to face various academic difficulties.

Educational stability is a key component in a foster care student’s success.  At the federal and state level, laws have been passed that require local and state child welfare and education agencies to fully and faithfully understand and implement legislation focusing on continuity and stability in a foster care student’s education. 

 Every Student Succeed Act (effective July 1, 2016)

  • Allows students in foster care to remain in the school district /school of origin even when the foster home placement changes.
  • Schools must immediately enroll students living in foster care after a school move.
  • Requires a foster care point of contact in every state education agency and each school district.
  • Requires plans for school district/school of origin transportation to maintain a foster student attendance in the school district/school of origin.
  • Requires schools to track achievement and graduation data for students in foster care.

(Information provided by the Oregon Department of Education – Foster Care)

Foster Care Point of Contact

Coordinator of Federal Programs
Nancy Singleterry
singleterry@gresham.k12.or.us

503-261-4579