This report presents findings from the Baseline Youth Survey, providing the most comprehensive view to date of young people approaching the transition to adulthood from foster care in the wake of the federal Fostering Connections Act. Information gathered during interviews with 727 youths who were an average of 17 years old at the time, offers insight into the needs and aspirations of transition-age foster youth. Study findings can help inform efforts to improve policies and services for foster youths’ transitioning to adulthood.
Download the Findings from the California Youth Transitions to Adulthood Study (CalYOUTH): Conditions of Foster Youth at Age 17 by Mark E. Courtney, Pajarita Charles, Nathanael J. Okpych, Laura Napolitano, and Katherine Halsted.
Download the Executive Summary of the Findings from the California Youth Transitions to Adulthood Study (CalYOUTH): Executive Summary. Conditions of Foster Youth at Age 17 by Mark E. Courtney, Pajarita Charles, Nathanael J. Okpych, Laura Napolitano and Katherine Halsted.
This report presents findings from the Child Welfare Worker Survey, an on-line survey of 235 California child welfare workers and their perceptions of key characteristics of the service delivery context of extended foster care, including: the availability of transitional living services; coordination between the child welfare system and other service systems such as county courts; and youth attitudes toward extended care. This report provides a valuable snapshot of how youths’ caseworkers, central players in the implementation of extended foster care, perceive young people making the transition to adulthood out of care and the service context for that transition.
Download the PDF of the California Youth Transitions to Adulthood Study (CalYOUTH): Early Findings from the Child Welfare Worker Survey by Mark E. Courtney, Pajarita Charles, Nathanael J. Okpych, and Katherine Halsted.
This paper examines the educational status of and services available to older adolescents in foster care in California, both from the viewpoint of the young people themselves and from the viewpoint of caseworkers who work with foster youth. Three specific areas are examined in the paper: the educational history and status of older adolescents in care, the perception of how ready these youth are to pursue their educational goals, and the availability and helpfulness of education-related services. This paper provides a statewide picture of older adolescents in foster care and caseworkers who serve this population. The findings point to progress that youth have made in completing their education; gaps between youths' aspirations, their current level of preparedness, and caseworkers' perceptions of their readiness to continue their education; and the critical role extended foster care is perceived to play in the educational futures of foster youth.
Download the PDF of "Youth and Caseworker Perspectives on Older Adolescents in California Foster Care: Youths' Education Status and Services" by Nathanael J. Okpych, Mark E. Courtney, and Pajarita Charles.
This report presents findings from a qualitative study of youths’ living arrangements in California. One of the most important ways that extended foster care is likely to influence the developmental context of youth making the transition to adulthood from foster care is through altering the range of state-supported living arrangements available to these young people. CalYOUTH conducted a qualitative examination of the contexts within which youth are experiencing extended foster care using short observations at multiple living settings, as well as open-ended interviews with young adults and staff/caregivers in these placements. Study findings illustrate the potential benefits of these new placement settings as well as the challenges of providing developmentally appropriate living arrangements for young adults in state care.
Download the PDF of the Residential Settings of Young Adults in Extended Foster Care: A Preliminary Investigation report by Laura Napolitano and Mark E. Courtney.