University of Vermont

New Project Will Work with Foster Care System

CDCI and CESS Receive New Grant

Photo of Dr. Jessica Strolin-Goltzman and Dr. Jesse Suter
Dr. Jessica Strolin-Goltzman and Dr. Jesse Suter

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Children and Families has awarded Jessica Strolin-Goltzman (Assistant Professor in Social Work) and Jesse C. Suter (Research Assistant Professor at CDCI) a $500,000 two-year grant to improve educational stability of middle and high school students in foster care. Drs. Strolin-Goltzman and Suter are Co-Principal Investigators on the project titled, "VT-FUTRES Fostering Understanding To Realize Educational Stability."

VT-FUTRES will provide infrastructure support to develop and implement effective multi-disciplinary policy and practice interventions for improving educational stability and outcomes of middle and high school youth in foster care. The project builds upon Vermont’s previous efforts to improve educational stability such as the 2006 Casey Breakthrough Series Collaborative, ( grant and the Vermont Justice for Children Task Force education sub-committee. (

The core of this grant is the Rock the GRADES toolkit based on the evidence-informed intervention strategies developed by Joan Rock during the BSC process. This intervention will be refined and tested during the two years of this grant.

In addition, VT-FUTRES will:

  • Build local multi-disciplinary capacity to improve educational stability and academic achievement for middle and high school youth in foster care through trainings and outreach.
  • Facilitate the cross-system collection and use of data on educational stability and outcomes of youth in foster care.
  • Identify youth leaders to positively influence infrastructure development through regional youth leadership teams and sharing their experiences with social media and marketing.

VT-FUTRES is a collaboration between the UVM’s College of Education and Social Services, the Vermont Department of Education, the Justice for Children’s Task Force of the Vermont Family Court, the Vermont Department of Children and Families, and children and families involved with DCF.

For more information contact: Jesse Suter, 802-656-1130, or Jessica Strolin-Goltzman, 802-656-2173,