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ERIC Number: ED548542
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2012
Pages: 180
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: 978-1-2674-1690-2
Academic Achievement and Aging out of Care: Foster Parents' Perceptions
Mack, Robert D.
ProQuest LLC, Ed.D. Dissertation, American International College
Foster children experience multiple barriers and challenges that, amongst other issues, prevent them from achieving academically. At the age of 18, foster youth are forced out of the Department of Children and Families care, leading many of them to become homeless or to return to the homes from which they were displaced. Scholarly literature and research demonstrate that the aging out process consistently has a detrimental impact on foster youth due to the lacks of familial support, financial opportunities, education, job skills, and social skills. While these challenges to aged-out foster youth are pandemic, and while so few foster youth go on to attain a four-year college degree, this population and this specific problem is grossly understudied. A staggering 97 percent of foster children do not continue on to a baccalaureate education. This project examines the role of the foster parent in foster youth's aging out process/transition to independent living/with a special consideration given to higher education. The researcher considers the experiences and opinions of foster parents regarding academic value, achievement, and those responsible for these factors related to youth in their care; and the opinions of foster parents regarding the aging out transition process and the acquisition of life skills related to youth in their care. This qualitative study explores academic achievement and the aging out of care process for foster youth through interviews with sixteen foster parents. The interviews were conducted in conjunction with a survey to document the experiences, perceptions, and beliefs of foster parents and how they navigated pathways to feel successful in the role of foster parent. As a result of this process, the researcher identified the following themes: (1) foster parents identified barriers to academic achievement; (2) foster parents do not hold common views about who is responsible for promoting academic achievement and what the role of the foster parent should be; (3) foster parents expressed the value of education as a core belief; and (4) foster parents identified the hardship related to foster youth aging out of care. Limitations and recommendations for future research are provided. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
ProQuest LLC. 789 East Eisenhower Parkway, P.O. Box 1346, Ann Arbor, MI 48106. Tel: 800-521-0600; Web site:
Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A