Bill Promises Stability for Foster Kids


Students are now in the full swing of school, getting used to their new schedules, teachers and friends.

But for many foster kids, school never becomes routine. Foster kids often move from home to home so staying in the same school can be difficult.

School stability often can make the difference between failure and success.

A bill before the governor's desk that could help provide some stability.

Going off to college is a big accomplishment for any student.  For one San Diego area homecoming princess, recognized by her high school for always doing the right thing, leaving for college is an especially big accomplishment.

Candace was eleven when she and her younger brother went into the foster care system. Her older brothers soon followed.

“Basically all our life we've been neglected abused physically and emotionally,” she said.

Candace moved to seven homes in seven years, but she stayed at the same high school.

“You actually see people every day. Knowing that even if things may not go well at home, you still have people to turn to at school,” she said. .

Her younger brother, who moved to seven schools in seven years has not been so lucky.

“He couldn't trust people he had behavioral problems because he didn't know who to talk to who to turn to,” she said.

The averages show foster children move anywhere from 8 to 9 times during their foster career.

“If you're moving that many times your academic achievement really takes a hit, “ said Kate So.

So is a teacher and Court Appointed Special Advocate for Voices for Children, a non profit that helps support foster kids.

She says studies show every time a child is moved from one school to another, anywhere from four to six months in academic achievement is lost. Under the new legislation, she says school stability will be given the consideration it needs.

“Everyone must look at school stability now and that hasn't been the case before,” she said. “It wasn't required to be considered; so it at least gives that badge of importance.  

A bill, which is still on the governor's desk, doesn't require that students stay in the same school but it recommends that if a move needs to be made, at least do it over summer break.

If that can't happen, the state must provide transportation so students can go to the same school.

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