California’s Fostering Connections: Ensuring That the AB 12 Bridge Leads to Success for Transition Age Foster Youth

By the Children’s Advocacy Institute at the University of San Diego School of Law (December 2013).

A review of the first 18 months of AB 12 implementation and the challenges and obstacles – past, present and future – to California’s successful implementation of the Fostering Connections to Success Act.


 

Youth Homelessness in the Era of AB 12: Findings from the Alameda County AB 12 Homeless Youth Demonstration Project

First report out on a partnership between Alameda County Foster Youth Alliance, DreamCatcher Youth Shelter and Bay Area Legal Aid (May 2013). The Project works to alleviate homelessness among youth who are living without parental support through focusing on supported connections to permanency options, planned independence and stability, and entry or return to the foster care system.


 

Providing Foster Care for Young Adults: Early Implementation of California’s Fostering Connections to Success Act

By Mark Courtney, Amy Dworsky and Laura Napolitano (2013).

Examines the planning process for implementing California’s Fostering Connections Act as well as the new law’s early implementation. Chapin Hall at the University of Chicago.


 

Young Adult Outcomes of Youth Exiting Dependent or Delinquent Care in Los Angeles County

By Dennis Culhane, Thomas Byrne, Stephen Metraux, Manuel Moreno, Halil Toros and Max Stevens (November 2011).

Report investigates the young adult outcomes of youth who age-out of or otherwise exit Los Angeles County’s child welfare supervised foster care system and/or juvenile probation system.


 

Extending Foster Care to Age 21: Implications and Estimates from Youth Aging Out of Foster Care in Los Angeles

By Michael R. Pergamit and Heidi Johnson from the Urban Institute.

This December 2009 Final Report to the Stuart Foundation examines a recent study, the Multi-Site Evaluation of Foster Youth Programs, and provides important data to help inform the discussion about adopting the federal legislation and about the support that might accompany extending foster care.


Partnership and the Politics of Care: Advocates’ Role in Passing and Implementing California’s Law to Extend Foster Care (2013)

Traces and analyzes the legislative and implementation process for AB 12 in California. Highlights the California experience to help other states can better understand the policymaking context of this bill and gain insights that could help them craft and pass similar legislation.


 

Does Extending Care Beyond Age 18 Promote Postsecondary Educational Attainment? (2010)

Explores the implications of extending foster care on foster youth post-secondary education success by comparing educational attainment rates among foster youth in Illinois, where foster youth can remain in care until age 21, with foster youth in Wisconsin and Iowa where foster youth typically exit care at 18.


 

Extending Foster Care to Age 21: Weighing the Costs to Government Against the Benefits to Youth (2009)

Assesses the costs to government for extending foster care as well as the long term cost savings and social benefits associated with this policy change.


 

My So-Called Emancipation From Foster Care to Homelessness for California Youth

This 2010 Human Rights Watch publication complete with summaries, findings, and recommendations, examines the route from foster care to homelessness and describes how it is built into the system in California.


California’s Fostering Connections to Success Act and the Costs and Benefits of Extending Foster Care to 21

By Mark E. Courtney, Amy Dworsky and Clark Peters; Partners for Our Children; March 2009.

Analyzes the potential costs and benefits of allowing foster youth to remain in care until age 21. Findings suggest that costs are more than offset by the potential benefits to foster youth and society.


 

Youth In Foster Care: Easing the Transition to Adulthood

By Mark E. Courtney; Society for Research in Child Development; January 2009.

This policy brief outlines a number of improvements federal legislators can make to improve HR 2893’s ability to support the broadest possible range of transition age former foster youth in their development into independent adults. Summarizes current research and makes policy recommendations for federal and state policymakers.


 

Outcomes for Youth in California’s THP-Plus Program: Are Youth in THP-Plus Faring Better?

By Brenda Lorentzen, Amy Lemley, Sara Kimberlin and Michele Byrnes; John Burton Foundation for Children Without Homes; September 2008.

Details the notable gains made by former foster youth receiving supportive housing and services through California’s THP-Plus program.


 

Continuing Foster Care Beyond Age 18: How Courts Can Help

By Clark Peters, Katie S. Claussen Bell, Andrew Zinn, Robert M. Goerge and Mark E. Courtney; Chapin Hall Center for Children at the University of Chicago; July 2008.

Provides insight into the many interconnected systemic issues involved in adapting current systems of foster care to serve youth aged 18 to 21.


 

Youth Transitioning from Foster Care: Background, Federal Programs, and Issues for Congress

By Andrienne L. Fernandes; Congressional Research Service; May, 2008;

Provides a comprehensive summary of the legal and policy context of efforts to extend support for foster youth to age 21; examines different approaches to extending support in light of relevant legal statutes, as well as then pending legislation.


 

Report on Human Rights Watch Interviews with Former Foster Children, Now Homeless

By Elizabeth M. Calvin of Human Rights Watch International;

An October 2006 report to the California State Senate Transportation and Housing Committee, chronicling the experiences of homeless former foster youth in California. Documents pervasive difficulties across domains of life functioning by providing testimonials in the youths’ own words. Contextualizes comments and provides concluding remarks.


 

Extending Support to 21—Details of State Practice

From Child Welfare League of America, this matrix provides details about five states’ policies and practices for retaining eligible youth in foster care beyond age 18. The five states are Connecticut, Massachusetts, Missouri, Minnesota, and New York.


 

Final Recommendations of the California Blue Ribbon Commission on Foster Care

Delivered to the California Judicial Council on August 15, 2008. Recommendation 1B includes a call to extend foster care to age 21. Recommendation 4B, based on earlier work by the Pew Commission on Children in Foster Care, contains calls for some provisions of AB 12.


 

From Foster Care to Young Adulthood: University of Chicago Law School Project’s Protocol for Reform

By Emily Buss, et al.; University of Chicago Law School; 2008.

Provides a detailed and comprehensive vision for reform of the foster care system to better ensure that youth “aging out” are supported through to a healthy, independent adulthood.


 

2007 Resolution of the American Bar Association

Submitted by Dwight L. Smith, August, 2007;

A resolution by the American Bar Association encouraging legal professionals to lead and promote efforts to create comprehensive support and services for youth who age out of foster care and other former foster youth until at least age 21. Contains extensive synthesis of research into the needs of transition age youth.


 

2002 Resolution of the American Bar Association

Submitted by Paige Berntson, August, 2001;

A resolution by the American Bar Association urging Congress and state and territorial legislatures to enact laws that provide youth in foster care full access, up to age 21, to independent and transitional living services and health care, and access to competent counsel who can advocate for necessary services and safeguards. Contains extensive discussion of research, policy, and legal considerations.


 

Aging out of Foster Care: Towards a Universal Safety Net for Former Foster Care Youth

By Melinda Atkinson; Harvard Civil Rights-Civil Liberties Law Review; 2008;

Provides an extensive review of research, legal findings and precedents, policy analysis, and overview of state programs which continue support for foster youth to age 21. Argues for adoption of legislation and policy changes to better support transition age foster youth.


 

Youth Emancipating from Foster Care in California: Findings Using Linked Administrative Data

By Barbara Needell, Stephanie Cuccaro-Alamin, Alan Brookhart, William Jackman and Aron Shlonsky; Center for Social Services Research—University of California at Berkeley; May 2002.

Details findings regarding the demographics, characteristics and implied needs of former foster youth in California.


 

Aging Out and on Their Own

By Jim Casey; Youth Opportunities Initiative & Kids Are Waiting; The Pew Charitable Trusts; March 2007.

Provides an overview of national demographics of youth aging out of foster care, research into their experiences and needs, and findings from focus groups and youth interviews.

The Midwest Evaluation of the Adult Functioning of Former Foster Youth
(Chapin Hall at the University of Chicago)


 

Assessing the Impact of Extending Care Beyond Age 18 on Homelessness: Emerging from the Midwest Study (2010)

Provides findings about the rate of homelessness among foster youth with relation to the extension of care. Compares foster youth in Illinois, which has extended care, with foster youth populations Iowa and Wisconsin where extended care does not exist.


 

When Should the State Cease Parenting? Evidence from the Midwest Study (2007)

By Mark E. Courtney, Amy Dworsky and Harold Pollack; Chapin Hall Center for Children at the University of Chicago; December 2007.

Documents findings of a longitudinal study of former foster youth indicating that they see better adult outcomes when continuing to receive services beyond age 18.


 

Midwest Evaluation of the Adult Functioning of Former Foster Youth: Outcomes at Age 26

By Mark Courtney, Amy Dworsky, Adam Brown, Colleen Cary, Kara Love and Vanessa Vorhies (2011).

Reports on the fifth wave of data collection (October 2010–May 2011) of the Midwest Study, a collaboration between public child welfare agencies in the three participating states (Illinois, Iowa and Wisconsin), Chapin Hall at the University of Chicago, and the University of Wisconsin Service Center.


 

Midwest Evaluation of the Adult Functioning of Former Foster Youth: Outcomes at Ages 23 and 24

By Mark Courtney, Amy Dworsky, JoAnn Lee, and Melissa Raap. Reports on the fourth wave of data collection (2010)

A project of Chapin Hall (University of Chicago), Partners for Our Children (University of Washington), and the Survey Center (University of Wisconsin-Madison).


 

Midwest Evaluation of the Adult Functioning of Former Foster Youth: Outcomes at Age 21

By Mark E. Courtney, Amy Dworsky, Gretchen Ruth Cusick, Judy Havlicek, Alfred Perez and Tom Keller; Chapin Hall Center for Children at the University of Chicago; December 2007.

Provides detailed findings from the third wave of data from a longitudinal study of former foster youth in Illinois, Iowa and Wisconsin.


 

Midwest Evaluation of the Adult Functioning of Former Foster Youth: Outcomes at Age 19

By Mark E. Courtney, Amy Dworsky, Gretchen Ruth, Tom Keller, Judy Havilicek and Noel Bost; Chapin Hall Center for Children at the University of Chicago; May 2005.

Provides detailed findings from the second wave of data from a longitudinal study of former foster youth in Illinois, Iowa and Wisconsin.


 

Midwest Evaluation of the Adult Functioning of Former Foster Youth: Conditions of Youth Preparing to Leave State Care

By Mark Courtney, Sherri Terao and Noel Boest; Chapin Hall Center for Children at the University of Chicago; February 2004.

Provides detailed findings from the first wave of the study, when youth were 17 years old and still under the jurisdiction of the state child welfare system.

SUBSIDIZED GUARDIANSHIP FOR RELATIVE CAREGIVERS

New Help for Children Raised by Grandparents and Other Relatives: Questions and Answers About the Fostering Connections to Success and Increasing Adoptions Act of 2008

By 18 national child welfare organizations, including the Center for Law and Social Policy and Children’s Defense Fund; January 2009. Outlines the implications of HR 6893 for children being raised by their grandparents and other relatives. In this guide, 18 supporting organizations have answered a number of questions posed to them by persons interested in implementing the new act.

 

If you have professional or institutional access to online scholarly journals, we also recommend the following articles:

Bratteli, M., Bjelde, K., & Pigatti, L. (2008).
“Grandparent and kinship foster care: Implications of licensing and payment policies.” Journal of Gerontological Social Work, 51(3-4), 228-246.

Examines the different licensing and payment policies in the United States for kinship foster care and assesses the potential impact of licensing policies on the likelihood that grandparents or other kin will become licensed as formal kinship foster care providers.

 

Winokur, M. A., Crawford, G. A., Longobardi, R. C., and Valentine, D. P. (2008)
“Matched comparison of children in kinship care and foster care on child welfare outcomes.” Families in Society, 89(3), 338-346.

Compares permanency, safety and stability outcomes on a matched group of children placed in kinship care and foster care. Positive outcomes of kinship care call for a greater commitment to making kinship care a viable out-of-home placement option for children and families.