Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Trauma Informed Interventions: Supporting Foster Youth through an On-Site Mentorship Program in the Secondary Educational Settings
by Kimes, Keri L., Ed.D., Concordia University Irvine, 2019, 133; 13810578
Abstract (Summary)

Youth in foster care experience significant deficits in their educational journey due to their experienced trauma and involvement in the child welfare system. The unique challenges for this at-risk group include lags in academic progress, increased disciplinary and special education referrals, frequent mobility and transition in home and educational settings, and decreased opportunities for post-secondary education and employment. This study looks at these needs through the lens of Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, that through fulfillment of lower-tier basic and psychological needs foster youth will reach the upper tier of self-actualization where learning can take place. Based on the idea that all foster youth have experienced some level of trauma, with many having experienced moderate to severe trauma, the researcher aimed to determine the types of trauma informed interventions which best met the needs of youth in foster care with a specific focus on an existing mentorship program. This study intended to determine whether this form of intervention adequately met the social-emotional and academic needs of foster youth. To this end, surveys, focus groups, and individual interviews were conducted with primary stakeholder groups of teachers, mentors, foster parents, and former foster youth over the age of 18. The results demonstrate positive effects from an on-site staff mentor, as long as they receive sufficient training in the specific needs of foster youth and understand the importance of confidentiality. With these concerns addressed, mentorship programs serve the unique needs of foster youth within the secondary academic setting.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Dunnick-Karge, Belinda
Commitee: Merwin, Gregory, Webb, Catherine
School: Concordia University Irvine
Department: Education
School Location: United States -- California
Source: DAI-A 80/08(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Source Type: DISSERTATION
Subjects: Educational leadership, Secondary education
Keywords: Foster care, Mentorship, Social-emotional learning, Trauma informed interventions
Publication Number: 13810578
ISBN: 9781392018729
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