Best Interest Determination (BID) – Educational Stability for Children and Youth in Foster Care in Pennsylvania

school kids outside in circle smilingSchool Placement Best Interest Determination Process (BID)

Section 1111(g)(1)(E) of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), as amended by ESSA, requires LEAs to ensure that a child in foster care remain in his or her school of origin, unless it is determined that remaining in the school of origin is not in that child’s best interest.

Local education agencies (LEAs) and county children and youth agencies must participate in the educational placement best interest determination (BID) process and consider how additional relevant parties can meaningfully participate in the BID.

This process must be formalized between the LEA(s) and the CCYA, meaning procedures should be consistent and efforts to determine best interest should be documented.

Foster care fact changing schoolsLEAs and CCYAs must consider all factors relating to a child’s best interest and should be student-centered. These factors include the appropriateness of the current educational setting, proximity of placement, and preferences of the child.

Transportation costs must not be considered when determining a child’s best interest.

To the extent feasible and appropriate, the child must remain in their school of origin until a final determination is made.

LEAs and CCYAs are encouraged to utilize the PA Department of Education and PA Department of Human Services Best Interest Determination (BID) Form (PDF).