ESSA School Stability for Students in Foster Care
In recognition of the unique needs of children involved in the child welfare system, both Federal and State governments have launched efforts to increase school stability and improve education outcomes for children in foster care. In December of 2015, the federal Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) was passed, reauthorizing the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (ESEA). ESSA’s provisions for schools regarding educational stability of children in foster care generally mirror similar requirements in the Federal Fostering Connections to Success and Increasing Adoptions Act of 2008 that govern State, local and tribal child welfare agencies.
The ESSA provisions for State and Local Educational Agencies (SEA and LEAs) related to children in foster care went into effect on December 10, 2016. A series of resource materials have been developed to assist the schools and child welfare agencies with implementation of these provisions. The following documents are among several resources available on the Nebraska Department of Education – Office of Coordinated Student Support Services’ Fostering Connections in Education webpage: https://www.education.ne.gov/csss/fostering connections/
- Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) Brief: Educational Stability of Children in Foster Care – Issued December 1, 2016; Updated March 1, 2021.
- Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) Excerpts: Educational Stability of Children in Foster Care – Issued December 1, 2016; Updated March 1, 2021.
- Statutory Definitions: Education of Children in Out-of-Home Care – Issued December 1, 2016; Updated March 1, 2021.
- Nebraska’s “Fostering Connections in Education” Liaison Network (FCLN) Summary – Issued August 18, 2014; Updated March 1, 2021.
- Frequently Asked Questions: Automated DHHS Superintendent Letter Project
– Issued April 13, 2016; Updated March 1, 2021.
- Non-Regulatory Guidance: Ensuring Educational Stability for Children in Foster Care – Issued June 23, 2016.