Title

Thriving in Transition: Building Learning Environments for Students in the Foster Care System

First Presenter's Institution

University of Georgia

Second Presenter's Institution

NA

Third Presenter's Institution

NA

Fourth Presenter's Institution

NA

Fifth Presenter's Institution

NA

Location

Percival

Strand #1

Academic Achievement & School Leadership

Strand #2

Social & Emotional Skills

Relevance

This presentation is closely aligned with the head--academic achievement. The presenter will discuss promising practices educators across p-16 system can use to work with students in the foster care system as they navigate transitions and school systems. The presentation is undergirded by Schlossberg's (2012) transition theory, as well as narratives from college students who are/were in the foster care system. This presentation will highlight educational practices students' perceived to be the most helpful.

Brief Program Description

This presentation will explore promising practices for teachings and other providers working with students in the foster care system. The presentation combines educational theory with students' lived experiences. Teachers, school counselors, and social workers will have an opportunity to learn about the unique needs of some of our most vulnerable students.

Summary

Less than 50% of students in the foster care system (SIFCS) graduate from high school (Unrau, Fost, & Rawls, 2011). Furthermore, SIFCS are less likely to enroll in and matriculate through postsecondary education than their peers outside the system. Research points to the countless barriers that exist between students and the systems they must navigate (Noonan et al., 2012). Since this research is grounded in transition theory and emphasizes the positive factors that influence student success, as told by first-person accounts, the presentation has the potential to reach multiple groups of stakeholders, including but not limited to high school teachers and counselors, college admission experts, student affairs professionals, foster parents, and SIFCS across p-16.

Evidence

Students in the foster care system (SIFCS) are an often overlooked and vulnerable population of students with limited access to the supports necessary to be successful in schools (Wolanin, 2005). The combined impact of transitioning into new schools and homes, as well as residual trauma associated with being in the foster care system compounds the barriers to academic success for a group of students already at risk of attrition. (Sheer, 2015) This presentation will consider the reasons students in foster care system struggle in school as well as the resources and factors necessary to promote academic achievement for students in the foster care system.

Scherr, T. G. (2015). Preparing students in foster care for emancipation, employment, and postsecondary education. School Psychology Forum, 9(1), 59-70.

Wolanin, T. R. (2005). Higher education opportunities for foster youth: A primer for policymakers. Washington, DC: Institute for Higher Education Policy.

Format

Individual Presentation

Biographical Sketch

Before working in higher education, Sarah Jones was a classroom teacher for 10 years in North Carolina public schools. The majority of her teaching experience was in Title I schools. Sarah is currently in a counselor education doctoral program at the University of Georgia, where she is researching the educational experiences of students in the foster care system.

Keyword Descriptors

Foster, FosterCare, AcademicAchievement, Students, Education, Graduation, Postsecondary, Teachers, Counselors

Presentation Year

2017

Start Date

3-7-2017 2:45 PM

End Date

3-7-2017 4:00 PM

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Mar 7th, 2:45 PM Mar 7th, 4:00 PM

Thriving in Transition: Building Learning Environments for Students in the Foster Care System

Percival

This presentation will explore promising practices for teachings and other providers working with students in the foster care system. The presentation combines educational theory with students' lived experiences. Teachers, school counselors, and social workers will have an opportunity to learn about the unique needs of some of our most vulnerable students.