At any one time there are 400,000 children in foster care in the US. Advocates report that the average time a child stays is 27 months. A new report from the University of California Berkeley released findings that show that only 1 in 10 foster care youth are proficient in math and only 2 in 10 are proficient in English in 11th grade.
Compelling testimony by a former foster youngster made the case even clearer. Christina Miranda told of attending 10 different schools including 4 different high schools. Senator Mary Landrieu, co-chair of the bipartisan Congressional Coalition on Adoption and Senate Caucus on Foster Youth related such data to increased dropout rates.
To increase stability and improve achievement, legislation sponsored by Senator Al Franken, the Fostering Success in Education Act, would direct local school districts to make certain that foster kids remain in their schools even if they move to another districts if child welfare agencies believe that it’s in the student’s best interest.
Philadelphia has the distinction of having the only high school in the nation that educates foster kids exclusively.
Reported By: Dr. Marciene Mattleman, KYW Newsradio