Meeting the Every Student Succeeds Act’s (ESSA’s) Key Provisions
How Do LEAs and CCYAs Meet ESSA’s Key Provisions?
1. Collaboration ESSA emphasizes dual-agency collaboration between education and child welfare partners to make decisions which best serve foster care youth. Routine collaboration, shared responsibilities, and joint decision-making are key to helping ensure school stability and school success.
2. School Placement Best Interest Determinations (BIDs) Children placed into foster care must remain in their school of origin unless a determination is made that it is not in the child’s best interest. Local education agencies (LEAs) and county children and youth agencies (CCYAs) must collabortate to design a formalized school placement best interest determination process to ensure that both agencies have the opportunity to gather meaningful input from all relevant parties.
3. Immediate Enrollment and Records Transfers If a determination is made that remaining in the school of origin is not in a child’s best interest, the school of origin, the placing CCYA, and the enrolling schools must collaborate to ensure that the student is immediately enrolled in his or her new school. Enrollment must not be denied or delayed because documents normally required for enrollment have not been provided.
4. Transportation Transportation may be needed in order for a child to remain in their school of origin when it is determined to be in their best interest. LEAs must collaborate with CCYAs to develop and implement clear written procedure to ensure that transportation is provided, arranged, and funded for foster care youth.
Overview of ESSA’s Foster Care Provisions
Staff and Collaboration
Emphasis on “dual-agency” vision, establishing state and local points of contact.
Ensuring Educational Stability
School Placement Best Interest Determinations, transportation, immediate enrollment and transfer of records.
Data Collection and Reporting
Reporting graduation rates and academic achievement of foster students in annual State Report Card.
Removing “awaiting foster care placement” from definition of homeless children and youths. Students now served under Title I, Part A.
Educational Stability for Youth in Foster Care in Pennsylvania