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October 2010Vol. 11, No. 8Collection of NYTD Data Begins

October 1, 2010, marks the launch of the first national data collection dedicated to understanding the transitions of youth from foster care to independent living, the National Youth in Transition Database (NYTD). On this day, States begin collecting data for NYTD, including case-level information on youth and the services they receive to assist them in living independently as part of the John H. Chafee Foster Care Independence Program (CFCIP). States will also be collecting outcomes information for NYTD on certain youth who are in or who have aged out of foster care. Ultimately, these data will provide insights into where State independent living programs and services can improve youth outcomes by increasing financial self-sufficiency, educational attainment, connections with adults, and access to health insurance as well as by helping youth avoid homelessness and high-risk behaviors. Alongside the National Child Abuse and Neglect Data System (NCANDS) and the Adoption and Foster Care Analysis and Reporting System (AFCARS), NYTD will assist in gaining a more complete, national picture of youth served by child welfare agencies.

The first semiannual NYTD data reporting deadline is May 15, 2011. While data collection is just beginning, States have been hard at work preparing for this historic effort since the regulation implementing the database was published in February 2008. States have partnered with foster youth, foster parents, youth service providers, and other stakeholders to determine how best to implement the NYTD data collection requirements, including how best to administer the NYTD youth outcome survey. To support these efforts, the Children's Bureau has provided technical assistance to States through the National Resource Center for Youth Development (NRCYD) and the National Resource Center for Child Welfare Data and Technology (NRCCWDT). These technical assistance efforts include three national technical assistance meetings for State representatives, the launch of a national community of practice website, and an active listserv for information sharing and dialogue among States and their stakeholders. The Children's Bureau will continue these supportive efforts, recognizing that NYTD is part of an ongoing partnership to improve our collective understanding of youth in transition through the collection of longitudinal data. 

For more information on NYTD, please contact the Children's Bureau at

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