The Road to Adulthood

Aligning Child Welfare Practice With Adolescent Brain Development

By the Annie E. Casey Foundation

July 22, 2017

Summary

With knowledge of how the adolescent brain matures, adults can do more to ensure that the road leaving foster care will take young people to self-sufficiency and successful adulthood. And this guide tells how.

Table of Contents

Key Takeaway

Wanted: Adults who recognize the significance of race and ethnicity on a young person’s formative experiences

During adolescence, brain development depends on experiences and opportunities to build relationships, exercise autonomy, take risks and grow in a supportive environment. For youth of color, normal risk taking may be inhibited by fear of repercussions and more often criminalized.

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