Category Archives: News | June 2020

2020 Graduates: Looking to the Future

For many teenagers, graduating from high school is a given. It’s an important step before they head to college or start working. For teenagers in foster care, however, high school graduation is a question mark on a long list of questions they have about their future. The sad truth is that only about 50% of teens in foster care will graduate high school or earn their GED.¹

Despite the hardships they’ve faced, 9 CASA teens overcame the odds and earned their diplomas or GED this year! One inspiring young woman even graduated a year early while being a single mom. CASA Older Youth Specialist Amanda Wilkerson shared, “I think these teens are all so impressive. Most of them came into care later in their lives and attended multiple schools. They’ve had to overcome a lot of hurdles.” Thanks to the support of their CASA volunteers and foster families, each of these young people is on their way to living the life they want to lead. Three of the graduates plan to attend community college or technical college in the fall. The graduate mentioned above intends to join the military. Others will be heading into the workforce.

Volunteer Scott Manamon’s CASA teen plans to attend a technical college with his sights set on becoming a diesel mechanic. Scott says he’s very proud of what his teen has accomplished; “he’s very resilient despite his situation and wants to be his best in every situation.”

Resilient is the perfect word to describe these teens. They refuse to let the past define them and are looking to the future with hope in their hearts.

A special thanks to our advocates of older youth and to our generous grant partners who make this work possible:


¹Fostering Success in Education: National Factsheet on the Educational Outcomes of Children in Foster Care (2014) https://cdn.fc2success.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/05/National-Fact-Sheet-on-the-Educational-Outcomes-of-Children-in-Foster-Care-Jan-2014.pdf

Asked & Answered: What is the primary goal of a foster care case?

The goal of a foster care case is set by the court, specifically the presiding juvenile judge. With very few exceptions, reunification of children and parents is the initial goal. Reunification means that the parents will work toward fixing the situation that brought the kids into foster care so that the children can be safely returned home. Parents will be given a case plan with things to complete such as drug treatment, counseling, parenting classes, etc. These services are provided by the Department of Human Services to help the parents become stable caregivers for their children. The case plan is not just a checklist; parents must be able to implement the skills they have learned.

Reunification is an important goal because children love their parents and want to be with their family of origin. As a society, there is real value in rehabilitating parents and stopping the cycle of drug abuse, physical abuse, etc. However, the most crucial consideration is the best interest and safety of the children. When children cannot safely return home, it is the intent for them to find a new permanent home with extended family or adoptive parents.

Answered by Team Lead & Advocate Supervisor Victoria Boyd