Foster Care State and Federal Requirements
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  Jess Lewis
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  Foster Care Education


Foster Care

State and Federal Requirements

Foster Care Education Program: Questions and Answers pending
This document was created in collaboration among the Foster Care Education Program office, Title I, Part A, DSHS/Children’s Administration, and the Education of Homeless Children and Youth Program. This document also includes excerpts from the US Department of Education Non-Regulatory Guidance published in June 2016.

State Law Overview
RCW 28A.225.023 - Review of unexpected or excessive absences—Support for youth's school work.

  • Requires districts to monitor the unexpected or excessive absences of dependent youth,
  • Proactively support the youth's school work so the student does not fall behind, and
  • Avoid suspension or expulsion based on truancy

RCW 28A.225.330(7) - Enrolling students from other districts

  • Prevents school districts from denying or delaying the enrollment of dependent youth
  • Requires school districts to retrieve school records (educational history) within two business days

RCW 28A.150.510 - Transmittal of education records to department of social and health services

  • Requires the prompt/timely transmission of student records to DSHS for appropriate case planning and maximizing the student’s academic achievement, and
  • Allows for data sharing for Passport to College and College Bound Scholarship Program

RCW 28A.320.192 - On-time grade level progression and graduation of students who are dependent youth.

  • Requires school districts to facilitate the on-time graduation of student in foster care by:
  • Waiving specific courses required for graduation if similar coursework has been satisfactorily completed in another school district,
  • Providing an alternative means to complete required coursework necessary for graduation,
  • Consolidating unresolved coursework and providing opportunities for credit accrual, or
  • Facilitating the graduation from the sending district where graduation requirements were met

RCW 13.34.045 - Educational liaison—Identification

  • Requires an educational liaison for students in grades 6-12 to be identified at each hearing in the dependency process. This person should be committed to providing on-going educational supports for the youth.

RCW 74.13.550 - Child placement—Policy of educational continuity

  • Requires that, whenever practical and in the best interest of the child, children placed into foster care shall remain enrolled in the schools they were attending at the time they entered foster care.

RCW 74.13.631(1)(e) - School-aged youth in out-of-home care—School placement options

  • DSHS is able to pay unpaid fines or fees for youth residing in out-of-home care

RCW 74.13.560 - Educational continuity – Protocol Development

  • The administrative regions of CA must develop protocols with school districts specifying strategies for communication, coordination, and collaboration regarding the status and progress of foster children in the region.

Federal Law Overview
Every Student Succeeds Act (2015)

Fostering Connections Act (2008)

Uninterrupted Scholars Act (2013)

Information Sharing

Special Education

What's New

Now Available!
Foster Care Liaisons/DSHS Contacts




   Updated 8/25/2016

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