- Colorado Department of Education (CDE);
- Colorado Department of Human Services (CDHS);
- Mile High United Way;
- University of Northern Colorado; and the
- Morgridge Family Foundation
CDE and CDHS entered into an innovative data-sharing agreement which enabled Dr. Elysia Clemens, with the University of Northern Colorado College of Education and Behavioral, to conduct a five-year trend study examining the graduation rates and dropout rates for these students that was published this week. This is all part of our effort to increase transparency.
Click HERE to download the study.
The study revealed that:
- Fewer than 1 in 3 Colorado students who were in foster care during high school graduated within four years;
- Approximately 1 in 11 students dropped out one or more times;
- Students in foster care dropped out earlier in their educational careers than other unique populations; and
- One in three students in foster care was identified as having a disability and eligible for special education services.
This is the first time we have had this type of baseline data. We now know that we have work to do to ensure educational success for every child, every time. This study lays the foundation and groundwork to move the needle.
Colorado is among the first states to engage in the process of bringing the educational outcomes of youth in foster care into plain sight. These students have been described as a population with an “invisible achievement gap”.
With the insights from this groundbreaking study and the ability to measure graduation, completion and dropout rates annually, Colorado can now make more data-driven decisions to meet the educational needs of youth involved with child welfare system.
The data also shows that homeless children did better educationally than children in foster care. This emphasizes the importance of family.
Next week, we will begin a series of blog posts focused on the safe reduction of congregate care - our 2014-2105 Wildly Important Goal. Every child deserves to grow up with a family. We all have a role to play as we work to achieve this goal. What can you do to help?
Where are the children and youth in your community living?
Take a closer look using this Community Performance Report.
All the best,
Julie Krow, MA, LPC
Director of the Office of Children, Youth and Families
P 303.866.5414 I F 303.866.4453 I C 720.205.9020
1575 Sherman Street, 2nd Floor, Denver CO 80203
Julie.Krow@state.co.us I www.colorado.gov/cdhs