In Hollywood, foster care students try to finish high school

Published 4:42 pm Saturday, June 6, 2015

LOS ANGELES — Tucked below the Hollywood sign, on a street where tourists stop to pose for pictures, is Beachwood House, a pale blue two-story home for foster kids without one.

There is no high-security, gated entrance. No 24-hour psychiatrist on staff. Instead, teenagers considered stable who haven’t been adopted or placed in a suitable individual home get the sort of care a mom or dad might provide: allowances, tutors and transportation to school.

The goal for them: graduate high school. What happened, however, underscored the challenges that foster kids face, and the hurdles educators and social workers have in helping them. Despite the extra attention, their troubled histories are constant pulls.

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As a result, children in foster care have the lowest graduation rates and the highest dropout rates of all at-risk students.