About This Program
The information in this program outline is provided by the program representative and edited by the CEBC staff. Courageous Connection has been reviewed by the CEBC in the area of: Educational Interventions for Children and Adolescents in Foster Care, but lacks the necessary research evidence to be given a Scientific Rating.
The Courageous Connection program is designed to make the administrators, teachers, and other staff members at schools more aware of the foster youth population enrolled and how to better serve these youth. The program also works directly with the youth to provide peer tutoring, peer support, authentic relationships, and access to normalizing activities while focusing on improving the youth’s grades, attendance, and behavior.
Goals of Courageous Connection:
The goals of Courageous Connection are to:
- Educate teachers and administrators on how to better focus on and serve the foster youth population.
- Build and nurture authentic lifelong relationships with youth.
- Provide access to normalizing activities for foster youth while in school.
- Improve the educational, social, and emotional outcomes for youth in foster care.
- Involve caregivers more in the educational life of the youth in their homes as well as provide extra support for those caregivers when dealing with the unique issues that arise with foster youth.
Target Population: Middle school and high school aged foster youth
For children/adolescents ages: 11 – 18
For parents/caregivers of children ages: 11 – 18
The Courageous Connection program is intended for individuals involved in the education of foster youth:
- Youth are supported by individuals at the school site that are aware of their unique situations.
- Youth are supported by their foster youth peers at their individual school sites.
- School personnel are educated on the foster care system and the youth that it affects within their classrooms and campuses.
- School personnel are provided support and direction on implementing successful school based programs for foster youth.
- Caregivers are provided support and better information on the education system and how to best navigate through the education of their youth.
- Other agency personnel are provided support and collaborative opportunities with the education system that teaches the youth they serve.
Courageous Connection was designed with a child/adolescent component that addresses the following presenting problems and symptoms for children/adolescents ages 11 – 18:
- The social, emotional, and educational issues that arise from youth being in the foster care system
Services Involve Family/Support Structures:
This program involves the family or other support systems in the individual's treatment: The program works directly with the other agencies involved in the lives of the foster youth in an attempt to eliminate the communication gaps between the different agencies and use the school system as a single point of service.
Courageous Connection was designed with a parent/caregiver component that addresses the following presenting problems and symptoms for parents/caregivers of children ages 11 – 18:
- The problems and communication gaps between caregivers and the school system as well as training and support in dealing with youth in foster care.
Courageous Connection was designed to be conducted in a group setting; but has not been tested for use in a group setting.
Recommended group size:
Should include all children in the program per school – could be as few as 5 or less or more than 45.
At least once per week is optimal
The entire length of a youth’s school career
This program is typically conducted in a(n):
This program does not include a homework component.
Courageous Connection does not have materials available in a language other than English.
Resources Needed to Run Program
The typical resources for implementing the program are:
An empty classroom or meeting area and at least 1 staff member willing to work with the youth.
Minimum Provider Qualifications
Practitioners must be willing to be provided with training on how to look at and use school data to better serve the youth they are serving, how to recognize the unique situations of youth in foster care and be willing to foster authentic and individual relationships with youth.
Education and Training Resources
There is a manual that describes how to implement this program, and there is training available for this program.
- Mike Jones, CEO and Founder of Courageous Connection
phone: (916) 477-0890
Training is obtained:
Number of days/hours:
Varies per school site
Relevant Published, Peer-Reviewed Research
This program has been reviewed and it was determined that this program lacks the type of published, peer-reviewed research that meets the CEBC criteria for a scientific rating of 1 – 5. Therefore, the program has been given the classification of "NR - Not able to be Rated." It was reviewed because it was identified by the topic expert as a program being used in the field, or it is being marketed and/or used in California with children receiving services from child welfare or related systems and their parents/caregivers. Some programs that are not rated may have published, peer-reviewed research that does not meet the above stated criteria or may have eligible studies that have not yet been published in the peer-reviewed literature. For more information on the "NR - Not able to be Rated" classification, please see the Scientific Rating Scale.
Child Welfare Outcomes: Not Specified
Currently, there are no published, peer-reviewed research studies for Courageous Connection.
Greenberg, M. T., Weissberg, R. P., O’Brien, M. U., Zins, J. E., Fredericks, L., Resnik, H., & Elias, M. J. (2003). Enhancing school-based prevention and youth development through coordinated social, emotional and academic learning. American Psychologist, 58(6/7), 466-474.
Jones, M., & Abdulmalik, H. (2011) The Courageous Connection toolkit and administrative guide. Elk Grove, CA: Courageous Connection.
Osterman, K. (Fall 2000). Students' need for belonging in the school community, Review of Educational Research, 70(3), 323-367.
Date Research Evidence Last Reviewed by CEBC: April 2012
Date Program Content Last Reviewed by Program Staff: April 2012