Kerry introduces bill to inform foster children of college aid

When introducing the bill, Kerry said that out of the 400,000 foster children in America, 28,000 of them age out of our foster care system without having been adopted.

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“I am greatly concerned that too many of our nation's foster youth are unable to appropriately access critical federal programs that provide assistance to help increase their educational opportunities,” Kerry said Thursday.

Kerry said currently only 3 percent of foster children start college, but even fewer finish their degree.

S. 3665 would require the Department of Education to notify foster youth of all federal funds available to support their pursuit of higher education — such as Education and Training Vouchers and the John H. Chafee Foster Care Independence Program — and include information specifically for foster youth on its website.

“The Foster Youth Higher Education Opportunities Act will automate the notification to foster youth of their potential eligibility for programs that serve as a lifeline to a better future.

Sens. Mark Begich (D-Alaska), Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), Ben Cardin (D-Md.), Al Franken (D-Minn.), James Inhofe (R-Okla.), Mary Landrieu (D-La.), Carl Levin (D-Mich.), Patty Murray (D-Wash.) and John Rockefeller (D-W.Va.) are co-sponsoring the legislation.