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From the Toronto Star – Education is one of the most important stepping stones to employment. But for youth in foster care, it has the added benefit of protecting against early parenthood for young women and conflict with the law for young men, says a new report.

It is just one of the observations that Jane Kovarikova, a former foster child who is now a PhD candidate, makes in a new compilation of peer-reviewed research on kids in the care of children’s aid societies, being released Wednesday.

With post-secondary education providing up to $1-million more in lifetime earnings than a high school diploma, attending college or university offers these youth the best chance of escaping poverty, she said. And yet less than half of youth in foster care graduate from high school and barely 20 per cent of those ever enrol in post-secondary education.

Currently, we are graduating them into a life of disadvantage,” said Kovarikova, founder of Child Welfare Political Action Committee, a national advocacy group of former youth in care that pushes for evidence-based policy-making in child protection. “So how do we fix that?”

Read the article in its entirety here.