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Aging out of the adoption system in Massachusetts - Research Paper Example

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Aging out of the Adoption System in Massachusetts In 2009 approximately 423,773 children nationwide were in the foster care system of that number some were adopted,but for others that remained in the system the experiences of their adolescence are times to be quickly forgotten …
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Aging out of the adoption system in Massachusetts
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Aging out of the adoption system in Massachusetts

Download file to see previous pages... Aging out of the Adoption System in Massachusetts In 2009 approximately 423,773 children nationwide were in the foster care system of that number some were adopted, but for others that remained in the system the experiences of their adolescence are times to be quickly forgotten and put far into the past Annually, approximately 24,000 children age out of the foster system that number excludes those that run away and those reunited with family members. In most states foster care stipulations do not provide assistance once a child has his or her 18th birthday This paper will list some of the past and current child welfare policies enacted in the United States that are actively providing assistance to states to alleviate the problems that youth aging out of the foster care system are encountering. Additionally, highlighting the State of Massachusetts discussing the innovative and creative methods state administrators are developing to provide substantial assistance to children transitioning from foster care to independence (Commonwealth of Massachusetts, 2011). The final talks will provide an analysis of the effectiveness of the programs and policies, reviewing the current trends, and proposals states are offering as possible ways to make the transition from foster care to adulthood smoother and less problematic. Aging Out Emancipated or “aged out” are terms for children in the foster care system that have reached their 18th birthday and are no longer eligible for services under the foster care auspice. The information about what happens to children after aging out of the foster care system consistently recite the plight of homelessness, unemployment, criminal activity, uneducated, unplanned parenthood, and other conditions appearing chronic for youth aging out of the system (Gardner, 2008; Leigh, et al, 2007; Keller, 2007). Whereas the problems facing youth aging out of the foster care system is systemic with some areas o experiencing a set of different problems, each state is responsible for establishing and managing their individual state’s issues. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Resources and the Social Security Administration are the primary federal agencies providing funding to states that develop and administer programs addressing the issues pertaining to the welfare of children (U. S. Department of Health & Human Resources, 2011). In 2009 roughly 29, 471 children were emancipated, 6% or 16,323-16 year olds; 6% or 17,514-17 year olds; and 10% or 26,416 were 18 years of age (United States Department of Health and Human Services, 2011). Children in foster care typically do not have any relationships with former family members such as grandparents, uncles and aunts. Because of the multiple placements in the foster care system children infrequently establish any consistent relationship other than with social service workers, therefore the transition from care to adulthood or self-sufficiency is not only emotionally traumatic but one in which the future looks bleak and lonely Because of the instability in the foster system and the multiple foster placements many children do not meet the minimum educational standards as a result with many failing to graduate from high school (Shin, 2009). The Chafee Education and Training Vouchers Program (ETV) provide $5,000 annually per child and enables states to provide GED certification for former foster children that did not complete high school. This program addresses the problem of foster youth not having the educational aptitude and ability to become self-sufficient and with the proper mentoring encourage youth to pursue secondary education. In 2009 through Congressional allocations of over 60 million dollars were set aside for states to use for educating foster alumni (U.S. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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