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