Students in out-of-home care: their experiences of Transforming Educational Achievement for Children at Risk, an Australian education programme

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Abstract

Children living in out-of-home care are at greater risk of poor educational outcomes compared to other children. To address their educational needs, several programs have been developed. Within a qualitative paradigm, this study explored the experiences of students about their involvement in TEACHaR (Transforming Educational Achievement for Children at Risk), a specialized education programme. Eight students (aged 13 to 18 years) from the programme participated in individual, semi-structured interviews. Responses were analysed using Interpretive Phenomenological Analysis. Participants indicated that the programme provided individualized and flexible academic support, reduced their shame and embarrassment and provided them with more than academic support. They highlighted the importance of the student–educator relationship, and the need for encouragement and motivation to pursue their educational goals. Finally, findings report on how COVID-19 impacts on student experiences of the programme. Recommendations for the development and improvement of education programs for students in out-of-home care conclude this paper.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)77-85
Number of pages9
JournalChild & Family Social Work
Volume28
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2023

Keywords

  • children in out-of-home care
  • education
  • education programs
  • foster care
  • qualitative
  • students' experiences

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