National Youth in Transition Database
In addition to establishing the Chafee Foster Care Independence Program, the Foster Care Independence Act of 1999 required the Administration for Children and Families (ACF) to create a National Youth in Transition Database (NYTD) to track the Chafee-funded independent living services that states provide to foster youth, the characteristics of the foster youth who receive those services, and the outcomes of foster youth across a number of domains, including: educational attainment, employment, welfare dependency, homelessness, children born to unwed mothers, incarceration, and high-risk behaviors. The NYTD outcome data are collected from foster youth on or shortly after their 17th birthday, then again at ages 19 and 21.
Chapin Hall is creating a new archive, built upon a platform similar to the one that supports the State Data Center’s Multistate Foster Care Data Archive. Participating states will deposit their NYTD outcome data with the State Data Center which will organize them into a longitudinal database. Member states will be able to manage and analyze their data using the Center’s web-based tools and the Center will provide guidance to help states maximize their data’s analytic value. The database could eventually be used by child welfare researchers to examine national trends and to compare outcomes across states with different policies and programs.