Time for Reform: Preventing Youth From Aging Out On Their Own

Sep 30, 2008

Many significant improvements have been made to the foster care system over the years, and across the country, case workers and court officials have worked to facilitate better outcomes for children in the government’s care. Yet the number of foster youth aging out of care keeps rising. In 2006, the latest year for which data are available, 26,181 youth aged out of care, a 119 percent increase since 1998. On average, youth who aged out of foster care in 2006 spent five years in the system, compared with less than two years for children who left through reunification, adoption, guardianship or other means.
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