Historically, when young people in foster care were removed from their families or changed placements, they were often required to change schools as well. That process contributed to gaps in these students’ education, lost course credits, and—compared to their non-foster counterparts—poorer grades and graduation rates . . . not to mention a fracturing of important connections at a time when these youth were already being pulled from familiar settings.
In 2015, President Barack Obama signed the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), a federal law that requires school districts and child welfare agencies to work together toward school stability for foster youth, and calls upon them to jointly establish plans for prompt and consistent transportation to foster youths’ schools of origin. At the direction of the Board of Supervisors, the Office of Child Protection was charged with working alongside the Los Angeles County Office of Education to coordinate this process.
The Education Coordinating Council, which functions under the umbrella of the OCP, helped to form a workgroup that designed and implemented an initial ESSA transportation plan pilot (still underway) that not only facilitates school-of-origin transportation for current foster youth, but also will provide data to inform long-term transportation plans between the Department of Children and Families Services and school districts within Los Angeles County.
The OCP’s final report to the Board on this effort is attached.
Thank you for your interest!
Los Angeles County Office of Child Protection
Kenneth Hahn Hall of Administration
500 West Temple Street, Room 383
Los Angeles, CA 90012