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Child Welfare Education Liaison (CWEL) Resources and Links
Annual Reports to the Colorado Legislature
The Foster Care Education Initiative's authorizing legislation requires an annual evaluation to be conducted and reported to the state legislature by February of each year.
CDE 2021-22 Report to State Legislature
American Bar Association Center on Children and Law
The ABA Center on Children and the Law has demonstrated a long standing interest in the issues specific to older youth in and transitioning from foster care. On October 7, 2008, President Bush signed the “Fostering Connections to Success Act” (P.L. 110-351) into law. Relevant publications about youth transitioning out of care, as well as relevant ABA Policy.
Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA)
CASA stands for the basic human rights of a child. A Court Appointed Special Advocate or CASA is a volunteer assigned by a judge to a case within the dependency and neglect (D&N) system. Children in such cases are the victims of abuse and neglect and are removed from their homes and families during the process. D&N cases are civil proceedings that aim to find permanency for the child or children involved.
Child Welfare Information Gateway
Child Welfare Information Gateway promotes the safety, permanency, and well-being of children, youth, and families by connecting child welfare, adoption, and related professionals as well as the general public to information, resources, and tools covering topics on child welfare, child abuse and neglect, out-of-home care, adoption, and more.
Casey Family Programs
Casey Family Programs is the nation's largest operating foundation focused entirely on foster care and improving the child welfare system. Founded in 1966, we work to provide and improve – and ultimately prevent the need for – foster care in the United States. As champions for change, we are committed to our 2020 Strategy for America's Children – a goal to safely reduce the number of children in foster care and improve the lives of those who remain in care.
Colorado Children’s Caucus
The Children’s Caucus provides a forum for all members of the Colorado General Assembly to discuss the challenges facing Colorado’s youth and work together to develop policy recommendations to strengthen families and improve the lives of children.
Data and Research
Education is the foundation of success for all young people. The Colorado Study of Students in Foster Care offers a statewide perspective on how students in foster care are faring in K-12 education and examines the relationship between mobility and educational success.
This research is conducted in partnership with Colorado Department of Education, Colorado Department of Human Services, and Mile High United Way. A goal of this researcher-practitioner partnership is to provide actionable information to the numerous public and private organizations working to close achievement gaps, address educational instability, and improve graduation rates for students in foster care.
The Colorado research is organized by audience:
- All Stakeholders: Infographics provide a user-friendly overview of how students in foster care are faring in K-12 education and recommendations for how to close gaps.
- Grant Writers and Program Planners: Needs Assessment Data can help you create a case for new resources or prioritize existing resources.
- Systems Changers: Whether you are a policy maker or a practitioner, reports are designed to inform systems-level efforts.
Educational Law in the Child Welfare System
The Colorado Court Improvement Program created training around Educational Law in the Child Welfare System, a multi-disciplinary curriculum for improvement of understanding the Child Welfare System.
Fostering Connections Act of 2008
Implementation Toolkit Improving Education Outcomes for Children and Youth in Foster Care. This publication offers assistance for those who seek to learn from other states and advocates about the tools, resources, and best practices that can improve educational outcomes in their state.
The U.S. Department of Education released the Foster Care Transition Toolkit to inspire and support current and former foster youth pursuing college and career opportunities. The Foster Care Transition Toolkit includes tips and resources intended to help foster youth access and navigate social, emotional, educational and skills barriers as they transition into adulthood. While the toolkit is written for foster youth, it’s also meant to be a resource for caseworkers, care givers, teachers and mentors to help foster youth. This toolkit was developed in partnership with the U.S. Departments of Health and Human Services Housing and Urban Development, Transportation, and Labor, in addition to youth and practitioners involved in the child welfare system.
Now in its second edition, Supporting Success provides useful information for college counselors, student support services programs and TRIO programs. It provides professionals and advocates with a powerful tool for improving postsecondary education and training outcomes for student in and from foster care.
Are there higher education resources available if I have been in foster care?
- You may be eligible for an Education and Training Voucher. For more information visit FosterEd A Pathway to Higher Education
- Bridging the Gap is a program that provides transitional housing opportunities for young adults who were in foster care. With the support of Independent Living Coaches and in collaboration with community partners, young adults are connected to supportive services that guide them as they transition to adulthood. For more information, visit United Way's site about housing and basic needs.
Journey through Foster Care
Journey through Foster Care is a visual representation for a better understanding of the journey through Foster Care.
Legal Center for Foster Care & Education
Legal Center for Foster Care & Education serves as a national technical assistance resource and information clearinghouse on legal and policy matters affecting the education of children in the foster care system.
Meeting the Educational Needs of Students in the Child Welfare System
A Tool for Teachers
Juvenile Law Center and Education Law Center of Pennsylvania have developed a set of tools to help educators and administrators understand the issues youth in the foster care system face, and to identify simple interventions that can make a difference helping youth in care succeed in school. These tools are supported by a grant from the Pennsylvania Developmental Disabilities Council.
Mile High United Way
Mile High United Way lives at the intersection of the private, public, philanthropic and nonprofit sectors. Today we work with hundreds of local nonprofit partners, government agencies, policy-makers and businesses to deliver services in three key areas of investment: School Readiness, Youth Success, and Adult Self-Sufficiency. Visit their website for additional information and resources.
The Rocky Mountain Children’s Law Center
The mission of the Children’s Law Center is to change the lives of abused and neglected children through compassionate legal advocacy, education and public policy reform.
The 2017 Helen M. McLoraine Scholarship for Foster Care & Emancipating Youth was created to provide educational scholarships for foster care youth who are emancipated or are in the process of preparing to emancipate from the foster care system in Colorado. Scholarship awards can be up to $10,000 per year for a total of four years. Online application and an overview of the eligibility requirements (for first-time applicants).
Eligibility and Application: Online application and an overview of the eligibility requirements. This program is open to students who have spent a minimum of 24 months in Colorado’s foster care system between the ages of 13 and 18.
Reapplication – Students who have RECEIVED funding from this scholarship program in previous years may fill out the reapplication (it has fewer questions). Be sure to start the application that says “reapplication” in the title.
2016 Forward Steps Scholarship is a comprehensive scholarship program for young adults who have transitioned out of foster care in Colorado. They are committed to ensuring that every student has the resources and support necessary to get into and through college. The Forward Steps Guardian Scholars Scholarship provides up to $6,000 in unmet financial need per academic year. By supporting our scholars in their academic and personal development, we equip our students with the skills and tools necessary to reach their full potential as active, independent, and self-sufficient members of their community. Interested applicants should apply online at Forward Steps. This year’s scholarship application window is February 2nd to April 4th.