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  • Policy Report
  • Educational Neglect: The Delivery of Educational Services to Children in New York City’s Foster Care System

    This report is based on the results of surveys of foster parents, case workers, educators, social workers, and children in the foster system. It finds that the main institutions in the lives of children in foster care fail to put into place the fundamental building blocks that could help them meet with educational success.

    Jul 20, 2000

    Black and white photo of a young girl with her head resting on her arms.

    The lack of data to comprehensively document the systemic problems with the delivery of educational services to children in foster care has, until now, been a major barrier to all involved parties in creating positive educational change for these children. In 1997, the Administration for Children’s Services and the Board of Education together entered into a Memorandum of Understanding to share data, with the goal of creating a comprehensive database to inform the delivery of educational services to children in foster care. Such a database, as of this publication, has yet to be completed.

    Since no system-wide data tracking the educational performance of New York City students in foster care exists, Advocates for Children of New York (AFC) decided to gather data directly from all of the stakeholders involved. Our data collection involved the dissemination and collection of over 280 surveys filled out by foster parents, biological parents, educators, social workers, case workers, educational professionals, lawyers, and children in foster care themselves. The surveys were targeted to obtain information concerning three primary areas: (1) appropriate enrollment of children in foster care in preschool and school programs; (2) continuity of educational services for students in foster care (or lack thereof); and (3) the quality of educational services.

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