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Vol. 4 No. 1 (2023): Journal of Foster Care
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Every year, more than 250,000 children in the United States are removed from their homes and enter the foster care system and add to a growing population that stands at more than 437,000 children (Children's Bureau, 2018). Nearly 75% of these children are placed in the care of a non-relative. Although family reunification is almost always the goal, only 55% of children in foster care will return home. The average age of foster children in the U.S. is 8 years old. These children are at greater risk to become pregnant, homeless, or incarcerated. Of those children who have spent any time in foster care, fewer than half graduate high school, 25% will be incarcerated, and only 3% will obtain a college degree (Children's Bureau, 2014). Health, education, and incarceration outcomes for children who exit foster care at 18 years of age not having been adopted or returned home (i.e.