HOMELESS, MELL, FOSTER CARE
Program for Students who are Homeless, Migrant, At-Risk or in Foster Care
The District is committed to the provision of a free and appropriate education for all students enrolled in the District. Therefore, the District complies with all provisions, regulations, and administrative rules applicable to state and/or federal requirements in order to serve students who are homeless, migrants, at-risk, or in foster care.
The District's liaison for students who are homeless, migrant or in foster care is:
Name: Amy Parker, Special Services Director
Phone #: (573) 491-3700
Email Address: firstname.lastname@example.org
Need to Know: Homeless Students
-Federal and state law prohibits Districts from discriminating or separating homeless students from other students in the District.
-The McKinney-Vento Act requires homeless students to be enrolled immediately. Enrolled means attending classes and participating fully in school activities, even if the students lack previous school records, immunization records, proof of residency, birth certificate, proof of age or proof of guardianship.
-Districts must ensure that homeless and unaccompanied homeless youth have full access to a free and appropriate education.
-Districts need to recognize and evaluate the needs of homeless students in the District and develop procedures to place such students into the school system and school programs.
Identification of Homeless - Determine if a student is homeless:
- Does the student lack a fixed, regular, and adequate nighttime residence?
- Is the student sharing housing of other persons due to loss of housing, economic hardship or a similar reason; living in motels, hotels, trailer parks or camping grounds due to the lack of alternative adequate accommodations; living in emergency or transitional shelters or abandoned in hospitals?
- Does the student have a primary nighttime residence that is a public or private place not designated for or ordinarily used as a regular sleeping accommodation for human beings?
- Does the student live in cars, parks, public spaces, abandoned buildings, substandard housing, bus or train stations or similar settings?
- Is the student a migratory child who meets one of the above-described circumstances?
-Service Provision - Upon determination of a child's homeless status, identify which school in which the student should enroll. Students have the choice to attend the origin school (the school attended when they were permanently housed or last enrolled) or the local attendance area school (any public school that non-homeless students who live in the attendance area in which the child is actually living are eligible to attend). Provide transportation to the school of origin if requested. If the school of origin is different from the student's current residence, both Districts must determine how to share in the costs of transportation.
-Determine what services will be provided for the student based upon program eligibility requirements including programs for disadvantaged students, programs for student with disabilities, limited language proficiency, or giftedness; programs for vocational and technical education; meal programs; and preschool programs. Additionally, ensure full access and participation to extracurricular activities.
-Administrative Requirements - Keep records that would ordinarily be kept and maintain and provide those records as provided by state and federal law. Establish a coordinator within the District to ensure the implementation of policies and laws for homeless students. Create policies, in accordance with state and federal law, for resolving grievances in the instance students or families believe the District's efforts fail to provide full services.
Need to Know: Programs for Migrant Students
- Districts are required by law to assist the state in identifying migratory children and should report any students who might be migrant students to DESE so that the student may be formally recognized as a migrant student.
- The federal government defines a migratory child as a child "who is, or whose parent or spouse is, a migratory agricultural worker…and who, in the preceding 36 months, in order to obtain, or accompany such parent or spouse, in order to obtain, temporary or seasonal employment in agricultural or fishing work…has moved from one school District to another."
- The District's Coordinator of Programs for Homeless Students can be responsible for implementation and maintenance of the District's program for migrant students.
- Schools should develop written procedures for ensuring that migrant students, once identified, receive necessary services. Assess migrant students' educational, health, and social needs and provide all services based upon program eligibility, including Title I programs, special education, gifted education, vocational and technical education, language programs, counseling, elective classes, and other activities and classes that support student development and ability to meet statewide assessment standards.
- Family Out-reach- If possible, establish advocacy and outreach program for students and their parents/guardians. Provide meaningful opportunities for parents/guardians to participate in programs established for migrant students.
Need to Know: At-Risk Students
- Districts must comply with federal and state laws to identify and administer services to at-risk students.
- At-risk students comprise students whose education can be adversely affected due to deficits, loss of interest in school or learning, or outside factors that impair education.
- State law provides that school Districts shall be eligible for additional state aid for programs for teen parents, and programs of parent education designed to assist at-risk families who exhibit characteristics which produce at-risk children.
- Under state law, the term "at-risk" is used to describe those families who exhibit the characteristics which may produce children likely to drop out of school, including but not limited to the following characteristics:
-Single parent households
-Low educational attainment of parents
-Numerous family relocations
-Referrals to mental health or social services agencies and
-Involvement with corrections systems.
Indications of at-risk students include:
-High absentee rate
-Low academic achievement
-Referrals to mental health agencies
-Recurring discipline problems and
-Involvement in the juvenile justice system.
Develop and implement programs to assist at-risk students. Such programs may
serve to increase self-esteem, pride, and academic excellence. Programs may include activities in the classroom, counseling (group and individual) and awareness and prevention efforts.
Need to Know: Students in Foster Care
- Federal and state laws require DESE and Districts to take steps to ensure and implement procedures for the enrollment and assimilation of students in foster care.
- Missouri law contains a Foster Care Education Bill of Rights setting forth the District's duties related to quickly facilitating enrollment and easing the student and foster family into school and the District. The District must promulgate and enforce administrative rules to implement state law.
- Enrollment - Facilitate timely enrollment and placement of foster care students, initially placing them in the same courses and programs they were in at the predecessor District. Allow the student a choice to enroll in either the same school that the child was enrolled in and attending at the time the child was taken into custody by Children's Division or any public school, if in an adjacent county, which the child previously attended. Support the transition by honoring the previous placements and provide the foster parents and other legal guardians access to records within three (3) business days.
- Student Support - The District should work flexibly and cooperatively with the foster parents and student to encourage educational success. Allow for calculation of grades on the date a student leaves school due to a court decision or child-placement, and do not lower the student's grades due to absences accrued under the placement circumstances. Encourage the student's participation in extracurricular activities and waive deadlines for applications to participate. Facilitate on-time graduation requirements if similar coursework has been satisfactorily completed, accept the results of standardized exams or alternative testing from other Districts, and award credit for full or partial work from other Districts per District policies
- Transportation — If the school of origin is determined to be the best educational placement for the student, the district and the Children's Division (CD) will collaborate to develop a transportation plan governing how transportation for the student will be provided, arranged, and funded. Children will receive transportation in a prompt and cost-effective manner. Any additional costs incurred by the school of origin will be paid by either the CD or the district or will be shared by the CD and the district.
FORMS: I-140-A Form (Notification of Enrollment/Placement Decision for Services under the McKinney-Vento Act)
You can find Form I-140-A here: Form I-140-A
Programs for English Language Learners
Under state and federal law, Districts are required to provide equal educational opportunities to all students. Therefore, school Districts must take affirmative
steps to ensure that students with limited English proficiency, sometimes referred to as English Language Learner (ELL) students, can participate meaningfully and equally in Districts' educational programs.
Districts should establish and implement procedures for accurately identifying ELL students in a timely, valid, and reliable manner so that they can be provided the opportunity to participate meaningfully and equally in the District's educational programs.
Checklist: Identify ELL Students
Administer a Home Language Survey to all newly enrolling students, or include the following questions in the District's enrollment form:
"Do you use a language other than English?"
"Is language other than English the first language the child learned?"
Investigate further if either question was responded with "yes".
Assess the English proficiency of any student whose enrollment form and/or Home Language Survey indicates that a language other than English is spoken in the home or there is evidence to suspect that a language other than English is spoken in the home.
Use the WIDA W-APT screening tool to identify the student as a ELL and make initial English language development placement decisions.
Notify all parents/guardians of language screening assessment results and placement within 30 days of beginning the school year or within 10 days if student enrolls during the year. (This notice must be provided, as practicable, in a language the parents/guardians can understand.)
Code all students determined to be ELLs in student information system to ensure accurate MOSIS reports submitted to DESE.
Checklist: District Oversight
Establish a District coordinator to direct the District's chosen English Language Development (ELD) program and provide qualified staff to run the ELD program.
Establish and implement policies to effectuate the District's chosen ELD program to:
Identify students in need of services
Identify Language Minority students who are also English Language Learners and assess their English proficiency
Asses the proficiency of students and screen progress yearly, and notify parents of information regarding the program and encourage meaningful parental involvement.
Administrative Manual S-150-A, Surveying, Analyzing, and Evaluating Students and S-loo-A, School Admissions
- There are no forms associated with this section.