The dashboard below displays information about the race demographics of children involved with the Allegheny County child welfare system. Explore data about stages in the child welfare system and where racial disproportionality occurs. Information includes a flow chart of the system and data on referrals to child welfare, case investigations and foster care placements outside the home. Data is updated yearly when a full year of data is available.
When a child is placed in a foster home, the resulting move can also mean living in a new school district. Research has shown that unplanned school changes can lead to worse educational outcomes, such as lower test scores and graduation rates. A 2015 federal mandate, the Every Student Succeeds Act, requires that children in child welfare placements remain in their home school – unless it is determined not to be in the student’s best interest – so as to maximize a student’s stability and educational outcomes.
In response, the Allegheny County Department of Human Services took advantage of a wealth of data and strong school partnerships to develop a collaborative, child-centered process that helps children in child welfare placements maintain school stability whenever possible. The result was hundreds of students continuing to attend their home school in the 2016-17 school year.
Read the full report to learn about how DHS responded, challenges we faced, and results from the first year of implementation.