Create Successful Transitions into Adulthood for Youth and Young Adults in Our Care

  • High School Graduation of Youth in Foster Care

    One of DCYF’s strategic priorities is that we create successful transitions to adulthood for youth and young adults in our care. Graduation from high school is an outcome indicator for this priority. Statewide, the 2020 cohort included 83,799 students, 83% of whom graduated on time. In most years, an additional 2-3 percent of the class have graduated by the end of their fifth year. Among that 2020 cohort, 635 youth were indicated as having been in foster care. Youth who have not been in foster care graduated at the rate of the overall class, whereas 50% of youth who had been in foster care graduated on time. In recent years, an additional 2-10% of those youth did graduate from high school after their fifth year.

    Four Year Graduation Rate, by Foster Care Status, Classes of 2013-2020
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    Five Year Graduation Rate, by Foster Care Status, Classes of 2013-2019
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  • Employment after Juvenile Rehabilitation

    Employment for youth and young adults leaving residential facilities in Juvenile Rehabilitation is another outcome indicator for creating successful transitions to adulthood for youth and young adults in our care. In State Fiscal Year 2018, 59.6% of youth and young adults found some work in the year following their release. Of those who did find work, 72% did so in the first quarter after leaving Juvenile Rehabilitation. Across the five years of SFY 2014-2018, employment rates varied significantly by race and ethnicity. Asian youth and Hispanic youth had the highest rates of employment, while American Indian/Alaska Native youth had the lowest.

    Quarters Worked First Year After Release from Juvenile Rehabilitation by Young Adults 18+ at Release, SFY 2014-2018
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  • Recidivism

    DCYF monitors recidivism rates as an outcome indicator for our priority to creates successful transitions to adulthood for youth and young adults in our care. In most years, over half of youth and young adults released from Juvenile Rehabilitation are adjudicated for a new misdemeanor or felony offense committed within 18 months of their release date.

    Youth and Young Adults Released from JR Found Guilty of Another Offense within 18 Months, SFY 2010-2017
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  • Housing Instability

    Housing instability is a balancing indicator for our outcomes related to creating successful transitions to adulthood. Youth and young adults who exit the foster care system without being placed into a permanent family through reunification, adoption, or guardianship are often referred to as "aging out" of foster care. These youth are at higher risk of becoming homeless or unstably housed than those who have a family to support them at this critical life transition. Across the years, within 12 months of leaving care, about 30 percent of former foster youth experience homelessness.

    Analysis has also been done about the housing instability of youth and young adults (ages 12 to 18) who are released from a Juvenile Rehabilitation institution. In 2017, of those who were not re-institutionalized, 25 percent experienced an episode of housing instability or homelessness within 12 months of discharge.

    Homelessness Among Former Foster Youth within 12 Months of Leaving Foster Care, 2013-2017
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  • Independent Living Program

    Youth in out-of-home placements and young adults who have experienced foster care often benefit from supports and resources that help them continue their education, start a career and transition into independent living. DCYF monitors consistent, high-quality transition planning as a driver for successful transitions to adulthood.

    DCYF makes this voluntary program available to youth ages 15 to 18 who are or have been in out-of-home care. It offers information and assistance on managing money, securing employment, building relationships, maintaining safe housing and other life skills. Learn more

    Foster Youth Served in Independent Living Program, FFY 2018
    Total youth served, FFY 2018 900
    Youth who created a plan based on a life-skills assessment 70%
    Youth who completed Independent Living Services modules 73%
    Source: Child welfare education and adolescent services providers, 2018
    Indicator Type: Driver

  • Transitional Living Services

    Youth in out-of-home placements and young adults who have experienced foster care often benefit from supports and resources that help them continue their education, start a career and transition into independent living. DCYF monitors consistent, high-quality transition planning as a driver for successful transitions to adulthood.

    The voluntary program for current and former foster youth ages 18 to 21 provides services to help young adults succeed when they are becoming self-sufficient. It includes educational services, financial assistance and one-on-one coaching. DCYF makes this program available to former foster youth who fit certain criteria. Learn more

    Foster Youth Served by Transitional Living Services, FFY 2018
    Total youth served, FFY 2018 1,140
    Youth who created a plan based on a life-skills assessment 52%
    Youth referred who requested or received services 92%
    Source: Child welfare education and adolescent services providers, 2018
    Indicator Type: Driver