Published in EdSource
July 27, 2014 | By Susan Frey

Instability — multiple homes and multiple schools — is one of the biggest obstacles to academic success for foster children. But about two dozen high school students in foster care in Southern California are benefiting from one constant in their lives: a program each summer at UCLA aimed at keeping them on track academically and preparing them for college.

The First Star Academy is a pilot program for foster youth run by First Star, a national nonprofit based in Washington, D.C., that focuses on helping abused and neglected children. For the past four years, the First Star Academy has brought the foster students to the UCLA campus each summer and meets with the students one Saturday each month during the school year.