Colorado’s Education in Foster Care Demonstration Project has been established to build state and local infrastructure to ensure that youth in foster care, ages 10-17, are afforded educational stability and greater opportunity for permanency. Project efforts, occurring between October 2012 and September 2014, will be implemented in Adams and Denver Counties in year one and expanded to up to two additional communities in year two. The overarching goal of the demonstration project is to increase school success and permanency through responsive service delivery and improved, cross-system collaborative infrastructure.
The project recognizes that older youth in foster care are at heightened risk for school failure and for experiencing placement issues. The specific needs to be addressed through the project include:
- School stability issues including: delays in enrollment and loss of educational time due to placement changes; school behavior problems, including untreated behavioral health needs, that result in disciplinary actions; school dropout and failure to pursue post-secondary education or vocational training due to fewer consistent educational supports.
- Risks to permanency in placement due to behavioral health and school related issues
- Past unidentified or untreated trauma that can affect school participation and permanency
- Poor coordination of service efforts due to a lack of collaboration and information sharing among key agency stakeholders