California Foster Youth Education
California Foster Care
Third Edition, October 2008
pre- K-12 and beyond
Alameda County Foster Youth Alliance Children’s Law Center of Los Angeles
American Bar Association, Center on Children Columbia College
and the Law County Welfare Director’s Association of California
California Administrative Office of the Courts, Center Family Matters Foundation
for Families, Children & the Courts
Honoring Emancipated Youth
California Alliance of Child and Family Services
Law Foundation of Silicon Valley
California CASA Association Learning Rights Law Center
California Child Welfare Co-Investment Partnership Los Angeles County Department of Children and
California Community Colleges Chancellor’s Office Family Services
California Department of Education Los Angeles County Education Coordinating Council
California Department of Social Services Los Angeles Unified School District Foster Care Unit
California Foster Youth Services Mental Health Advocacy Services, Inc.
California School Boards Association National Center For Youth Law
New Ways to Work
California State University, Los Angeles
Office of the Chancellor, The California State
California State University, San Marcos
California Workforce Investment Board
Orangewood Children’s Public Counsel Law Center
California Youth Connection
Protection & Advocacy, Inc.
Casey Family Programs
Sacramento Child Advocates, Inc.
Child & Family Policy Institute of California
Child Guidance Foster Family Agency Youth Law Center
Citations and Abbreviation Key
Abbreviations included in citations or referenced throughout
the fact sheets
AB Assembly Bill
CCR California Code of Regulations
CFR Code of Federal Regulations The California Foster Youth Education Task Force thanks the
individuals listed below for their time and effort in writing and
EC California Education Code revising this publication:
GC California Government Code written by: Sarah Vesecky, Sara Woodward, Amy
IEP Individualized Education Plan second edition, revised by: Sarah Vesecky, Amy Levine
Jennifer Troia—November, 2006
WIC Child Welfare & Institutions Code third edition, revised by:
Patty Armani, Betsy DeGarmoe, Karie Lew, Craig
USC United States Code Liu, Marymichael Miatovich, Ann Quirk, Robert
Taniguchi, Leecia Welch—October, 2008
For electronic copies of this publication and for other
produced courtesy of Casey Family Programs
resources, please visit www.casey.org and www.clcla.org
factsheet number one
pre- K-12and beyond
California Foster Youth Education
Introduction The child’s educational rights-holder may does not have the clothing or records nor-
Effective January 1, 2004, Assembly also file form JV-539 to request a hearing mally required for enrollment.
Bill 490 (Steinberg) created new duties on a proposed school change. CRC 5.651(e)(2) EC § 48853.5(d)(4)(B).
and rights related to the education (B).
Timely Transfer of Records
of dependents and wards in foster care. If there is a hearing request, the social Placing Agency’s Duties
worker or probation officer must provide a As soon as the social worker or probation
Guiding Principles report on the proposed change within 2 officer becomes aware of the need to
Everyone shares the duty to promote court days, and the hearing must be held transfer a child to a new school, he/she
the educational progress of children in within 7 calendar days. Pending the result must notify the school district of the child’s
out of home placements. of the hearing, the child has a right to re- last expected day of attendance and re-
main in his or her current school. CRC 5.651 quest that the child be transferred out.
Educators, school personnel, social (e)(2)-(4). EC § 49069.5(c).
workers, probation officers, caretakers, Role of the School District Social workers and probation officers may
advocates, and juvenile court officers must If a child’s residential placement changes, access the child’s school records—without
work together to serve the educational the school district must allow the child to needing parental consent or a court order—
needs of children in foster care. remain in his/her ―school of origin‖ (usually to help with school transfer and enroll-
the child’s current school) for the rest of ment, compile the child’s health and edu-
Foster youth must have access to the same the school year. The district’s foster youth cation summary, and conduct educational
academic resources, services, and extra- liaison may recommend that this right be case management. EC § 49076(a)(11).
curricular and enrichment activities avail- waived after consulting with the child and
able to all students. All educational deci- New School District’s Duty
his/her educational rights-holder and pro- Within 2 business days of receiving a re-
sions must be in their best interests. EC §§ viding them with a written explanation. If a
48850(a), 48853(g); WIC §§ 361(a), 726(b). quest for enrollment, the foster youth liai-
dispute arises, the child has the right to son for the new school must contact the
Educational matters must be considered at remain in the school of origin until the dis- school last attended by the child to obtain
every court hearing. Social workers and pute is resolved. EC § 48853.5(d). all academic and other records.
probation officers have many education- School District Liaison EC § 48853.5(d)(4)(C).
related reporting requirements. See CRC Each school district and county office of Old School District’s Duties
5.651(c) for a detailed list of requirements. education must designate an educational Within 2 business days of receiving a trans-
liaison for foster youth, whose duties are: fer request, the current school district must
School Stability • To ensure proper educational placement, transfer the child out and deliver the stu-
Role of the Placing Agency school enrollment, and checkout from dent’s school records to the next school.
When making an out-of-home placement, school, The records must include a determination
the placing agency must consider both the • To assist with the transfer of grades, of seat time, full or partial credits earned,
placement’s proximity to the child’s current credits, and records when there is a school current classes and grades, immunization
school and the impact the placement will change, and records, and, if applicable, special educa-
have on the child’s educational stability. • To request or provide school records
WIC § 16501.1(c). tion or Section 504 records. EC § 49069.5(d)-
within 2 business days when there is a (e).
change of school. EC § 48853.5(b), (d)(4)(C). All records must be provided to the new
Within 24 hours of determining that a pro-
posed placement or placement change Local Public Schools Preferred school regardless of any outstanding fees,
would result in a change of school, the Foster children must attend programs oper- fines, textbooks, or other items or money
social worker or probation officer must ated by the local educational agency owed to the school last attended. EC §
notify the court, child’s attorney, and edu- unless: 48853.5(d)(4)(C).
cational representative or surrogate parent. • The child remains in the school of origin, Grade and Credit Protections
CRC 5.651(e)(1)(A). • The child has an IEP requiring a different A child’s grades may not be lowered due to
educational placement, or absences caused by a change in place-
If a child who is changing schools has an • The child’s educational rights-holder ment, a court appearance, or a court-
Individualized Education Program (IEP), the determines that it is in the child’s best ordered activity. EC § 49069.5(g)-(h).
social worker or probation officer must give interest to attend a different educational
written notice of the impending change to program. EC § 48853(a). Local educational agencies must award all
the current local educational agency and students (not just foster youth) with credit
the receiving Special Education Local Plan Before any decision is made to place a for full or partial coursework satisfactorily
Area at least 10 days in advance. CRC 5.651 child in a juvenile court school, community completed at a public school, juvenile court
(e)(1)(B). school, or other alternative educational school, or non-public, non-sectarian school
setting, the child’s educational rights- or agency. EC § 48645.5.
Role of the Court holder must first consider placement in the
The child’s attorney must discuss any pro- regular public school. EC § 48853(b).
posed school change with the child and the The California Foster Youth Education Task
child’s educational rights-holder, as appro- Immediate Enrollment Force is a coalition of more than 35 organiza-
priate, and may request a hearing on the If a child changes schools, he/she has the tions dedicated to improving educational out-
right to be enrolled in the new school im- comes for foster youth. For more information,
proposed change by filing form JV-539 please contact Erin Saberi, Casey Family Pro-
within 2 court days of receiving notice. CRC mediately, even if there are outstanding grams, at 916.503.2950 or email@example.com.
5.651(e)(2)(A). fees, fines, textbooks, or other items or
money due to a school or if the student Fact sheets produced April 2005. Third edition -
factsheet number two
California Foster Youth Education
Introduction Prior to disposition, the court can temporar- Limitations on Appointments
Parents have the right to make educational ily limit the parents’ educational rights. • Court-Appointed Decision-Makers
decisions for their children unless their This limitation expires if the petition is dis- A person who has a conflict of interest can-
child is in a legal guardianship, their child missed or after a hearing under WIC § 361 not be appointed to be the educational
(Disposition). WIC § 319. The court may re-limit representative. This includes social work-
has been freed for adoption (parental
educational rights at the Dispositional ers, probation officers, the child’s attorney
rights terminated), or the juvenile court has and group home staff. A foster parent is
Hearing or at any subsequent hearing.
limited their educational rights. WIC §§ 361, WIC § 361 not deemed to have a conflict of interest
726; GC § 7579.5; EC § 56055; 34 CFR §300.30.
solely because he/she receives compensa-
The social worker or probation officer must • Appointing an Educational Representative tion. WIC §§ 361(a), 726(b).
confirm and indicate in every court report At the same time the court limits educa-
• Surrogate Parents
who is the current educational rights holder tional rights, it must appoint a ―responsible
A surrogate parent may not be employed by
for the child. CRC 5.650 adult‖ to make educational decisions for
the California Department of Education, the
the child. WIC §§ 361(a), 726(b). (The California
LEA, or any other agency involved in the
Why Does This Matter? Rules of Court refer to this person as an education or care of the child. GC § 7579.5(i)-
Important decisions often are not made in ―educational representative.‖ CRC 5.502(13), (j); 20 USC § 1415(b)(2)(A); 34 CFR § 300.519(d)(2).
a timely manner, if at all, when it is unclear 5.650(b).) The appointment must be made
regardless of whether the child has been Length of Court Appointments
who has the right to make educational An appointment to make educational deci-
decisions for a youth. For example: identified as needing special education or
other services. sions lasts until one of the following things
• Special Education Evaluation
The educational representative has all of • The youth reaches 18 years of age, at
School districts generally cannot start the educational rights normally held by which time the youth holds his/her own
evaluating a student for disabilities that parents. See CRC 5.650(e)-(f) for a list of rights educational rights. EC §§ 49061(a), 56041.5.
make him/her eligible for special education and responsibilities. The representative is (Exceptions are if the youth chooses not to
until the adult with educational rights signs entitled to receive notice of and participate make her own educational decisions or has
a proposed assessment plan. in hearings related to educational matters been deemed by the court to be incompe-
and may use court form JV-537 to explain tent to do so).
• Individualized Education Program (IEP) the child’s educational needs to the court. • Another adult is appointed to make edu-
A student’s IEP cannot be implemented CRC 5.650(j). cational decisions. (An educational repre-
without the approval and signature of the sentative may resign after giving notice to
adult who holds educational rights. • Appointing a Surrogate Parent the court and the child’s attorney).
If the court is unable to locate a responsi- • The right of the parent or guardian to
• School Placement ble adult for the child, and the child has make educational decisions is fully re-
The educational rights-holder has a role in either been referred to the local educa- stored.
deciding whether the youth will remain in tional agency (LEA) for special education or • A successor guardian or conservator is
his/her ―school of origin‖ after a residential has an IEP, the court shall refer the child to appointed.
placement change. EC § 48853.5(d). the LEA for appointment of a ―surrogate • The child is placed in a planned perma-
parent‖ using form JV-535. WIC §§ 361(a), 726 nent living arrangement, at which time the
A foster youth’s educational rights-holder (b); GC §§ 7579.5-.6; CRC 5.650(b). foster parent, relative caretaker, or non-
may determine it is in the youth’s best in- relative extended family member has the
terest to attend an educational program The LEA must make reasonable efforts to right to make educational decisions. EC §
other than one operated by the local edu- appoint a surrogate parent within 30 days. 56055; WIC §§ 361(a), 726(b); CRC 5.650(e)(2), (g).
cational agency. EC § 48853(a). GC § 7579.5(a). It must select a relative care- Remember: the right to make educational
taker, foster parent, or CASA if one is will- decisions only transfers to the caretaker in
Considerations for the Court ing and able to serve. GC § 7579.5(b). Court a planned permanent living arrangement if
Educational matters, including who has the form JV-536 must be used for communica- education rights were previously limited.
authority to make educational decisions for tion with the court about appointments and
Hearing to Make New Appointment
a foster youth and whether someone else changes. CRC 5.650(d).
If a child needs a new educational repre-
should be appointed, must be considered The surrogate parent makes decisions sentative to be appointed, his/her attorney
at every court hearing. CRC 5.651(b). related to special education evaluation, may request a hearing using court form JV-
eligibility, planning, and services. 539. CRC 5.650(d)(4), (g)(2).
All findings and orders about educational GC § 7579.5(c).
decision-making must be documented in
court form JV-535. CRC 5.650(b). • Court as Educational Decision-Maker
If the court cannot identify a responsible
Appointing Educational Representatives adult to make educational decisions for the The California Foster Youth Education Task
The court can limit the right of a parent or child and the child does not qualify for spe- Force is a coalition of more than 35 organiza-
guardian to make educational decisions for cial education, the court may make educa- tions dedicated to improving educational out-
a child if it is necessary to protect the child. tional decisions for the child with the input comes for foster youth. For more information,
Any limitations must be specified in a court please contact Erin Saberi, Casey Family Pro-
of any interested person. WIC §§ 319(g)(2), 361 grams, at 916.503.2950 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
order. WIC §§ 361(a), 726(b); CRC 5.650(a). (a); CRC 5.650(b).
Fact sheets produced April 2005. Third edition -
factsheet number three
California Foster Youth Education
The following information pertains to Laws Governing Special Education California Law parallels IDEA: Found at
children between the ages of 3 – 22 who Cal. Ed. Code §§ 56000 and following; State Regula-
are eligible for special education services. FEDERAL LAW tions: 5 CCR §§3000 and the following sections.
The procedures are slightly different for Each district will have its own Section 504
children under age 3 who are eligible for IDEA: The Individuals with Disabilities policy.
Early Intervention Services. Education Act, found at 20 USC §§ 1400
and the following sections, ensure that Eligibility for Special Education Services
What is Special Education? all children with disabilities have access under IDEA
Special education is a system of services to a free appropriate public education Two triggering conditions must be met:
and supports designed to meet the specific (FAPE) that emphasizes special education • Child has an impairment adversely
learning needs of a child with disability. and related services designed to meet
affecting his/her educational performance
EC § 56031 unique needs.
that requires special education.
Who Receives It? IDEA’s corresponding federal regulations • Impairment fits into one of the following
MYTH: All special education students are found at 34 CFR Part 300. qualifying categories of disabilities: mental
attend a special education class or special retardation; hearing impairment; speech or
school with other disabled students. Section 504: Sec. 504 of the Rehabilitation language impairment; visual impairment;
Act of 1973 is found at 29 USC §794, 34 CFR emotional disturbance; hearing and visual
REALITY: Special education services can §104.1 and the following sections. impairment; severe orthopedic impairment;
be provided in an array of individualized autism; traumatic brain injury; other health
educational placements appropriate to SECTION 504 covers a broader group of impairment; or specific learning disability.
the individual student. Not all are extremely students than IDEA. All children that 20 USC § 1401(3); EC §56026
restrictive. Where appropriate, they can be qualify under IDEA also qualify for protec-
provided in the mainstream classroom with tions under 504, but there are some stu- Age: Students may be eligible for special
additional supports. dents who only qualify for 504. Usually education from birth to age 22. EC §56026
students with 504 plans are those who do
What is Provided Under Federal and not qualify under IDEA.
California Law? Early Intervention Services:
Eligibility for 504: Section 504 provides children under age 3; provided through the
FAPE: Free, Appropriate, Public, Education. services to students who have a physical or regional center.
Refers to the provision of highly individual- mental impairment that substantially im-
ized special education and related pairs a major life activity (such as learning). Preschool Services: children between ages
services provided at public expense. 34 CFR §104.3(j) 3 – 5; provided through the school district.
20 USC §1401(9); 34 CFR §300.17; Some examples of disabilities that may
EC §56000; 5 CCR §3001(o)
warrant a 504 plan are asthma, allergies,
Special Education Services: children be-
diabetes, ADD, or ADHD.
Related Services: Any services necessary to tween the ages of 5-22; provided through
help a student benefit from special educa- Similarities and Differences Between 504 school district.
tion program, e.g. transportation, psycho- and IDEA: Both require districts to provide
logical services, physical, speech and occu- disabled students with FAPE. Timelines and Procedures
pational therapy, etc. SST (Student Study Team). An SST is a
20 USC §1401(26); 34 CFR §300.34;
EC §56363 function of regular education, not special
education, and is governed by school dis-
LRE: FAPE must be provided in the trict policy, not federal or state law. It is not
Least Restrictive Environment. Children mandatory to have an SST prior to an IEP
with disabilities are to receive education or referral for special education assess-
to the maximum extent appropriate with ment. Students struggling in school may be
nondisabled peers and are not to be re- referred to an SST. SST’s can be the ―first
moved from regular classes unless, even step‖ towards determining whether a stu-
with supplemental aids and services, edu- dent needs special education services.
cation in regular classes cannot be
20 USC §1412(a)(5)(A); EC §56031 Individualized Education Program (IEP)
The meeting and document that sets forth
Child Find: School districts/SELPAS IDEA requires districts to develop an what services a child found to be eligible
have a duty to actively and systematically Individualized Education Program (IEP) for special education is to receive. Also
identify, locate and assess individuals with While Section 504 requires a plan, it is the meeting where eligibility is determined.
exceptional needs who may be entitled to EC §§56032, 56341
not called an IEP, and different districts
special education services. 20 USC §1412(a) (continued on next page)
(3); EC §56301(a), 34 CFR §300.111 process these plans differently.
factsheet number three
Special Education (continued)
(continued from previous page) IEP reviewed at least once annually, or The due process hearing should be con-
more frequently upon request. ducted at a time and place reasonably
Who Attends? 20 USC § 1414(d)(4); EC §§ 56343, 56043 convenient to the parent and the child.
An IEP Team consists of: a parent/ 34 CFR §300.511(d); EC §56505 (b)
educational representative or surrogate Note that the IDEA Reauthorization does
parent, one regular education teacher, an permit 15 pilot states to create ―long-term‖ An impartial hearing officer should
educational agency representative other IEPs that are reviewed every three years. conduct the hearing. 20 USC §1415(f)(3);
than the teacher, individual who conducted California has not been identified 34 CFR §300.508; EC §56505(c)
the assessment, other individuals with as a pilot state. 20 USC §1414 (d)(5)
expertise or knowledge about the child’s Compliance Complaint: Parents/
needs at the local education agency’s or A complete reevaluation must be done educational representatives should file a
parent’s discretion, and the child, when every three years, or more frequently compliance complaint with the State
appropriate. 20 USC §1414(d)(1)(b); 34 CFR upon request. 20 USC §1414(a)(2)(B); Department of Education when they
§300.344; EC §56341 34 CFR §300.536, EC §§56381, 56043(k) feel that the school district has violated
their duty under a student’s IEP or the
The IEP Process Educational Representative or surrogate special education laws. Anyone may
parent appointed by the court or school file a Compliance Complaint (i.e. individual
Referral for assessment to determine district may sign the IEP in lieu of the natu- does not have to hold education
eligibility for special education service ral parent if natural parent’s educational rights for the child). 20 USC §1415(b)(6);
starts the process (may be made by parent, rights have been limited (see fact sheet on 34 CFR §300.660-662; 5 CCR §4650; 5 CCR §4600;
teacher, or other provider) but must be educational rights). WIC 361, 726; GC §§7589.5, EC§56500.2
in writing to ensure that assessment and 7579.6; 20 USC §1415(b)(2)(A)(i); EC § 56055
meeting timelines will begin. EC §56029;
5 CCR §3021
Procedural Rights/Disagreements with
―Proposed assessment plan‖ must be
submitted to the person who holds educa- If the person who holds education rights
tion rights, within 15 calendar days of re- needs time to think over or disagrees with
ceipt of written referral. EC §56321(a). This parts of an IEP plan, they should not sign it
plan explains what types of assessments at the IEP meeting. It is their right to with-
will be conducted. Generally a child cannot hold consent. Any parts of the IEP to which
be assessed without written consent. the parent or equivalent has not consented
Exceptions may apply if: may become the basis for a due process
• child is a ward of the court (in limited fair hearing. 20 USC §1415; EC §56346
• district prevails at a due process Due Process
EC §§ 56321, 56381(f)
If the person who holds education rights
Person who holds education rights has disagrees with the services provided
15 calendar days to provide written con- under the IEP and thinks they do not
sent to proposed assessment. provide FAPE, he/she may file for a due
EC §§ 56321(c), 56043(b) process fair hearing. EC §56502. Requests
are filed with the Office of Administrative
The initial IEP team meeting to determine Hearings (OAH).
eligibility must be held within 60 calendar
days (not school days) of receipt of written If the person who holds education rights
consent to assessment, not counting sum- files for a due process hearing, the youth
mer vacation or school breaks of 5 days or must generally ―stay put‖ (i.e. remain)
more. EC §§ 56344(a), 56043(c) in his/her current placement until the dis-
agreement is resolved. 20 USC §1415 (j); 34
At the IEP meeting, a student’s eligibility CFR §300.518; EC §56505(d)
for special education services under
IDEA is determined. If a student is found After filing, the person who holds education
eligible, then an IEP document and plan rights may attend mediation with the
is developed. The written IEP includes district. During the time of this mediation
process, the student is generally entitled to The California Foster Youth Education Task
goals and objectives, accommodations, Force is a coalition of more than 35 organiza-
related services, behavioral plans, where remain in his/her current school placement tions dedicated to improving educational out-
necessary (see fact sheet on behavioral and an attorney may represent any of the comes for foster youth. For more information,
plans) and, transitional plans for no later parties to the mediation. please contact Erin Saberi, Casey Family Pro-
20 USC §1415e; 34 CFR §§300.506, 507(a)(2); grams, at 916.503.2950 or email@example.com.
than 16 years of age. 20 USC §1414(d); EC§56501(b)(1)(2); EC §56503
EC §56345.1; 5 CCR §3042(b); Fact sheets produced April 2005. Third edition -
EC §56043(g)(1) October 2008.
factsheet number four
California Foster Youth Education
Nonpublic Schools Definition: Foster Children (LRE): School Districts/ Assembly Bill 1858
SELPA/County Office of Education
NPS: A private, nonpublic, nonsectarian Assembly Bill 1858 was passed in 2004.
shall first consider placement and
school that enrolls individuals with AB 1858 requires that an NPS provide
services though programs operated by
exceptional needs pursuant to an Individu- access to:
public education – regardless of whether
alized Education Program (IEP). • The same instructional materials
the child is placed with a relative, foster
EC §56034 used by the district in which the NPS is
parent, or group home/licensed children’s
located. EC §56366.10(b)
institution. Foster youth with special needs
Placement in an NPS • College preparation courses.
may only be placed in a nonpublic school if EC §56366.10(b)(2)
the district/SELPA does not have a public • Extracurricular activities such as art,
Students may not be placed in an NPS program that can meet the child’s needs. sports, music, and academic clubs.
unless they have a valid IEP requiring EC §56157(a) EC §56366.10(b)(3)
placement at the NPS, or the person • Career preparation and vocational
holding educational rights consents. EC Children Placed in Group Homes / training. EC §56366.10(b)(4)
§48853 (see Education Rights fact sheet) Licensed Children’s Institutions (LCI) • Supplemental assistance, including
academic tutoring, psychological counsel-
A student must have an IEP and be as- ing, and career and college counseling.
sessed for special education services prior EC §56366.10(b)(5)
to placement in a NPS. EC §§56342.1, 56320 • Teachers and staff who provide
• The assessments conducted must academic instruction and support
conform with state and federal law. services with the goal of integrating
• The student may not be assessed for the students into the least restrictive
special education services unless the environment. EC §56366.10(c)
person who holds educational rights
has provided consent, with certain
exceptions. EC §56321
• The school district has prevailed at a
due process hearing. EC §§56321(c), 56506.
• IDEA does not require parental
consent for the initial evaluation of
a child who is a ward of the state and
not living with his/her parents if the LEA
cannot find the parent, the parent’s A Group Home/Licensed Children’s Institu-
rights have been terminated, or a judge tion may not condition placement at the
has removed the parent’s educational LCI on attendance at a nonpublic school
decision-making rights and appointed owned or operated by an agency associ-
another person to represent the child. ated with the LCI. EC §56366.9
20 USC §1414(a)(1)(d)(iii); EC § 56321.1
A licensed children’s institution or nonpub-
Consent for an initial assessment is lic, nonsectarian school, or agency may not
not consent for placement in an NPS or require as a condition of placement that
provision of any other special education educational authority for a child, as defined
services. EC §56321(d) in Section 48859, be designated to that
institution, school, or agency. EC §48854
Least Restrictive Environments (LRE)
When a child is placed in a licensed chil-
Students must be placed in the least re- dren’s institution with an on-grounds non-
strictive environment to meet his/her public school, the child may attend the on- The California Foster Youth Education Task
needs. A child shall not be placed in a spe- grounds school only if the SELPA’s IEP Force is a coalition of more than 35 organiza-
tions dedicated to improving educational out-
cial class or NPS unless the severity of the Team has determined that there is no ap- comes for foster youth. For more information,
disability is such that education in a regular propriate public program in the community please contact Erin Saberi, Casey Family Pro-
class with the use of supplementary aids (i.e. RSP, Special Day class, etc) and the on grams, at 916.503.2950 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
and services cannot be achieved satisfac- -grounds program is appropriate and can Fact sheets produced April 2005. Third edition -
torily. EC § 56040.1 implement the child’s IEP. 2 CCR §60510(b)(2) October 2008.
factsheet number five
California Foster Youth Education
What Are AB 3632 (AB 2726) Services and Obtaining AB 3632 Services: Referral should appear in writing on the IEP,
How Are They Provided? Process and Timeline whether or not the team agrees.
2 CCR §60040
Who Makes the Referral?
AB 3632 (also referred to as 26.5 or AB
2726) services are mental health services Generally speaking, the school district
In order to obtain AB 3632 mental
provided as part of a youth’s Individualized must first attempt to meet the child’s
health services, a school must make a
mental health needs through ―appropriate
Education Program (IEP) to ensure that the referral to the county department of
counseling and guidance services,
youth benefits from his/her education. AB mental health (DMH). 2 CCR § 60040. The
psychological services, parent counseling
3632 services are ―related‖ services (see school usually makes the referral after
and training, social work services or behav-
special education fact sheet). GC §7572 the IEP team has met and decided that ioral intervention.‖ GC §7576(b)(5)
Common types of services include: individ- such a referral is appropriate. However, Exception: Where school counseling,
ual, group or family psychotherapy; day the school psychologist may make the parent counseling/training, social work
treatment services; residential placement. referral without an IEP team meeting. services, and behavioral intervention
would clearly be inappropriate and
Who Provides AB 3632 Services? Once DMH has received the referral, it ineffective. In these cases, the IEP Team
Mental health services are provided must provide the person who holds educa- must document what services were consid-
through the County Department of tional rights with an assessment plan (see ered and why they were rejected.
Mental Health (DMH). GC §§7572, 7576 fact sheet on educational rights). 2 CCR 2 CCR §60040(b)(4); GC §7576(b)(5)
§60045(b). DMH cannot conduct the assess-
Eligibility for Mental Health/AB 3632 ment for AB 3632 services until the person How Long Does DMH Have to Complete the
Services Assessment after the Request by the
School is Made?
There are two eligibility requirements
that must be met for a youth to receive The assessment must be completed and
an IEP meeting held to discuss the
AB 3632 mental health services:
assessment within 50 days of the DMH
• The youth must be eligible for
receiving the signed assessment plan.
special education services. GC §7576 2 CCR §60045(e)
• The youth must need mental health
services in order to benefit from his/her
special education program. GC §7572
NOTE: A student does not need to be
eligible for special education services
who holds education rights has given
through the ―emotionally disturbed‖ Individ-
written consent to the assessment.
ual’s with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA)
2 CCR §60045
category in order to receive AB 3632 ser-
vices. He/she need only be eligible for spe- The person who holds educational rights
cial education services in any category. may request that the school psychologist
make the referral to DMH without an
However, to receive residential placement IEP meeting. If the school refuses, the
AB 3632 services, the youth must be made person who holds educational rights
eligible for special education because of may request that an IEP meeting be held
his/her ―emotional disturbance.‖ In addi- within 30 days of his/her request. These The California Foster Youth Education Task
tion, to receive residential placement, the Force is a coalition of more than 35 organiza-
requests should be in writing. tions dedicated to improving educational out-
child must require a 24-hour therapeutic EC §56343.5 comes for foster youth. For more information,
program in order to benefit from his/her please contact Erin Saberi, Casey Family Pro-
grams, at 916.503.2950 or email@example.com.
educational program. 2 CCR §60100 At the IEP meeting, a request for an AB
Fact sheets produced April 2005. Third edition -
3632 DMH assessment may be made and October 2008.
factsheet number six
Functional Behavioral Assessments (FBA)
And Behavioral Intervention Plans (BIP)
California Foster Youth Education
Definitions by the IEP to be a manifestation and for which a behavioral plan has not
of the child’s disability pursuant to 20 been developed; or (2) for which a previ-
Functional Behavioral Assessments (FBA) / USC §1415(k)(1)(E) & (F). ously designed behavior intervention is not
Functional Analysis Assessments (FAA) : • When a student is removed from his/ effective.” 5 CCR §3001(c)
A functional analysis assessment is an her current placement as a result of (1)
analysis of a student’s maladaptive behav- weapon possession; (2) illegal drug Emergency interventions may only be
ior. The assessment must include exten- possession/use; (3) infliction of serious used to control unpredictable, spontane-
sive observation of the student and an in- bodily injury, regardless of whether the ous behavior which poses clear and pre-
depth analysis of the student’s environ- behavior was a manifestation of the sent danger of serious harm to others
ment and past history. The goal is to deter- child’s disability, as appropriate so that which cannot be prevented by a less re-
mine what triggers the maladaptive behav- the behavior does not recur. strictive response. 5 CCR §3052(h)(i). Emer-
ior and to learn how to best control the 20 USC §1415(k)(1)(G)
gency interventions may not include (1)
behavior through the use of positive inter- • When the child is removed from his/ locked seclusion (unless it is in a facility
vention strategies. Prior to conducting a her placement for more than 10 school otherwise licensed or permitted by state
functional analysis assessment, the school days (i.e. suspension or expulsion) and
law to use locked room); (2) employment of
district must obtain consent from the per- the behavior is determined not to be
a device or material or objects which simul-
son who holds educational rights (see fact related to his/her disability.
taneously immobilize all four extremities
sheet on educational rights). 20 USC §1415(k)(1)(D)(ii)
(except that prone containment may be
Who Conducts the Functional Analysis If the IEP Team determines that behavior used as an emergency intervention by staff
Assessment? that violates a code of student conduct is a trained in such procedures), and (3) force
State law requires that a functional manifestation of the child’s disability, and that exceeds that which is necessary under
analysis assessment be ―conducted by or that the child already has a BIP, the IEP the circumstances.
under the supervision of a person who Team must review the BIP and modify it, as
has documented training in behavior necessary, to address the behavior. Whenever an emergency intervention is
analysis with an emphasis on positive 20 USC §1415(k)(1)(F) used, the school district must (1) notify
behavioral interventions.‖ 5 CCR §3052(b) the parent (and residential care provider
What Shall a Functional Analysis if appropriate); (2) forward a Behavioral
Behavior Intervention Plan (BIP): Assessment Include? Emergency Report to the student’s file
A written document that is developed and designated administrator; (3) schedule
when the individual exhibits a serious California Law requires that those an IEP meeting within 2 days for any stu-
conducting FBA/FAA gather information dent without a current behavioral interven-
behavior problem that significantly
from three sources: tion plan to determine the necessity for a
interferes with the implementation of the
• Direct observation functional analysis assessment and to
goals and objectives of the individual’s
• Interviews with significant others determine the necessity for an interim be-
Individualized Education Program (IEP).
5 CCR §3001(f) • Review of available data such as havioral intervention plan.
other assessments and individual records. 5 CCR §3052 (h) (i)
5 CCR §3052
Interventions are to be positive in nature. Federal law refers to “Functional Behav-
These sources/observations must include: ioral Assessment”; State law refers to
Behavioral interventions do not include
• Systematic observation of the targeted “Functional Analysis Assessment.”
procedures which cause pain or trauma.
behavior in order to determine frequency,
Behavioral interventions respect the indi-
duration, and intensity; See also Cal. Ed Code §48915.5.
vidual’s human dignity and personal
• Observation of events which trigger
privacy. Such interventions shall assure the
the behavior, analysis of the consequences
individual’s physical freedom, social inter-
of the behavior;
action, and individual choice.
5 CCR §3001(d); 5 CCR §3052 (d) • Ecological analysis of the settings in
which the behavior occurs;
FBA and BIP Procedures • Review of records for medical and
health factors which may influence
When must the school district conduct behavior; and a
an FBA and develop a Behavioral Interven- • Review of the history of the behavior,
tion Plan? including the effectiveness of previously
• When an IEP Team finds that instruc- used behavioral interventions.
tional/behavioral approaches specified in 5 CCR §3052(b)(1)
the student’s IEP have been ineffective [5 The California Foster Youth Education Task
CCR § 3052(b)], and/or What Happens if there is a ―Behavioral Force is a coalition of more than 35 organiza-
tions dedicated to improving educational out-
• Student exhibits a serious behavior prob- Emergency?‖ comes for foster youth. For more information,
lem that significantly interferes with the please contact Erin Saberi, Casey Family Pro-
implementation of the goals and objectives A behavioral emergency is “the demonstra- grams, at 916.503.2950 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
of the student’s IEP. 5 CCR §3001(f) tion of a serious behavior problem (1) Fact sheets produced April 2005. Third edition -
• Behavior that violates a “code of student which has not previously been observed October 2008.
conduct‖ (i.e. school rule) is determined
factsheet number seven
California Foster Youth Education
Introduction within 2 school days unless the student • Before a student can be expelled, the
waives the right to attend. district must conduct a hearing. The
If student is in special education or EC §48911(c)
suspected of being eligible for special district governing board may conduct
education services, please see Fact At the time of suspension, the school must the hearing, or the district can appoint
Sheet 8 titled Special Education make a reasonable effort to contact the an administrative panel or hearing officer
Discipline since additional procedural student’s parents by telephone or in per- to conduct the hearings.
safeguards may apply. son. In addition, the parent must be noti- EC §§48918(a), 48918(d)
fied in writing of the suspension. • The hearing must be held within 30
Suspensions and expulsions are two EC §48911(d) school days after the school recommended
types of school discipline. Both are the student for expulsion, unless the stu-
regulated by California Education Code While the school can request that a parent dent requests that the hearing be post-
§48900 and the following sections. attend a conference regarding the stu- poned. EC §48918(a)
dent’s behavior before the student returns • The student must receive written notice
For both suspensions and expulsions, to school, if the parent fails to attend, the
the school district must have grounds of the hearing at least 10 calendar days
student cannot be penalized for this fail-
to suspend or recommend a student for ure, and the school cannot postpone the before the hearing. The notice must include
expulsion. Grounds for suspension or student’s return to school. EC §48911(f) the date and place of the hearing and a
expulsion must contain two elements: statement of specific facts regarding the
an act prohibited by the Ed Code and a Limits to Suspensions basis for the expulsion recommendation. EC
connection to school. EC §48900(r) In general, a student cannot be suspended §48918(b)
for more than 5 consecutive school days, • The student has the right to bring a
ACT: EC §§ 48900, 48900.2 – .4 & .7 or 20 school days total. lawyer or other advocate to the hearing.
list specific prohibited acts. Students EC §§48911(a), 48903(a) EC §48918(b)(5)
can be suspended or recommended for • At the hearing, the student can bring
expulsion for many acts, but cannot be EXCEPTIONS His/her own witnesses and/or ask that the
suspended or expelled for being tardy or If the student is recommended for expul- district subpoena witnesses. The
absent from school. EC §48900(v) sion, and the school holds a meeting with student has the right to question the
the student’s parents and determines that witnesses and present evidence.
Connection to School the student poses an ongoing danger or
The act must be related to school activity. • In general, the governing board
threat of disrupting the educational proc- cannot base a decision to expel a student
A student can be suspended or expelled ess, the student can be suspended while
for acts that occur while on school grounds, the expulsion is pending, even if this ex- solely on hearsay. EC §48918(f)
while going to or coming from school, dur- ceeds 5 cumulative school days, or 20 total
ing the lunch period, or during, going to or school days that year.
coming from a school sponsored activity. EC §48911(g)
Disabled students have different rights If the student enrolls in or transfers to a
regarding school discipline. If you are new school, he/she can be suspended for
working with a student who receives or up to 30 days that school year. EC §48903(a)
should receive special education, see the
fact sheet on school discipline & special Suspension can only be used after a
education. EC §48915.5 school tries other ways to discipline a
student. Exception: If the student violated
Suspensions EC §48900(a), (b), (c), (d) or (e), or if the school
A suspension is a temporary removal from finds that the student’s presence causes a
school. danger to other students, property, or
threatens the instructional process, the Necessary Findings
school can suspend the student for a first In most cases, in order to expel a
offense, without first using other discipli- student, the school district must do the
Suspensions should be preceded by an
informal conference. EC §48911(b) nary methods. EC §48900.5 following:
• Honor the student’s due process
At the conference, the student must be Expulsions rights by meeting all procedural and
informed of the reason for the disciplinary An expulsion prohibits a student from time requirements.
action and given an opportunity to present attending any school within the district for • Demonstrate that there are grounds
his/her story and evidence in his/her de- a year. The school can recommend a stu- for the expulsion. [Grounds include an
fense. EC §48911(b). A student can be sus- dent for expulsion, but only the governing act prohibited by EC and a connection
pended without a conference only in an school board can actually issue an expul-
sion. to school; see above].
―emergency situation.‖ EC §48911(c) • Demonstrate that either other means
Expulsion Procedures of correction are not feasible or have
If a student is suspended without a confer- failed to bring about proper conduct, or
ence, both the parent and the student A student recommended for expulsion
must be notified of the student’s right to a has due process rights. They include:
(Continued on next page)
conference. The conference must be held
factsheet number seven
School Discipline (continued)
(Continued from previous page) Rehabilitation Plans
At the time of the expulsion, the governing
that due to the nature of the act, the board must recommend a plan of rehabili-
presence of the student causes a continu- tation for the period of time while the stu-
ing danger to the physical safety of dent is expelled. This plan can include rec-
the student or others. EC §48915(b) ommendations for improved academic
performance, tutoring, special education
Zero Tolerance Offenses assessments, job training, counseling, em-
In some cases, the secondary findings in EC ployment, or community service.
§48915(b) are not required. In these situa- EC §48916(b)
tions, the governing board must expel a
student if the district establishes that the Readmission
student committed one of the following At the end of the expulsion, the
acts + connection to school. EC §48915(c) student can apply for readmission to
• possessing, selling, or furnishing the governing board. The board must
a firearm readmit the student unless they find
• brandishing a knife that either:
• selling a controlled substance • the student has not completed her
• committing or attempting to commit rehabilitation plan, or
sexual assault • the student continues to pose a
• possession of an explosive danger to campus safety, other students,
or district employees. EC §48916(c)
When the governing board has made the Appeals
necessary findings to expel a student, the The student has the right to appeal the
board can decide to suspend enforcement board’s decision. The student has 30
of the expulsion for a period of up to one days to file an appeal with the county
year. The board can also assign the stu- board of education. EC §48919. The decision
dent to an educational program designed of the county board is final. EC §48924
to rehabilitate the student. EC § 48917(a). Grounds for appeal are limited to the
During this period, the student is on proba- following questions:
tionary status. EC §48917(c) • Whether the governing board
acted without or in excess of its jurisdic-
The board can revoke the suspension tion;
or the expulsion if the student commits • Whether there was a fair hearing
any of acts prohibited by the EC, or if before the governing board;
the student violates any district rules or • Whether there was a prejudicial
regulations. EC §48917(d) abuse of discretion at the hearing;
• Whether there is relevant and material
Terms of Expulsion evidence, which, in the exercise of
Education Program while Suspended reasonable diligence, could not have
The district must provide an educational been produced or was improperly excluded
program for the student while he/she is at the hearing. EC §48922
expelled. This must be set up at the time
the board expels the student. EC §48916.1
For non-zero tolerance offenses, the
expulsion can be no longer than the last
day of the semester following the semester
when the student was expelled.
The readmission date must be set at the
time when the pupil is expelled.EC §48916(a) The California Foster Youth Education Task
For zero tolerance offenses [listed Force is a coalition of more than 35 organiza-
tions dedicated to improving educational out-
previously], the term of expulsion will comes for foster youth. For more information,
be one calendar year from the date of please contact Erin Saberi, Casey Family Pro-
the expulsion. However, the governing grams, at 916.503.2950 or email@example.com.
board can decide to set an earlier readmis- Fact sheets produced April 2005. Third edition -
sion date on a case-by-case basis. October 2008.
factsheet number eight
Special Ed Discipline
California Foster Youth Education
Introduction constitute a pattern, then the suspensions If the student returns to school, then the
are a change in placement. A pattern school district shall conduct a functional
California special education discipline is shown by considering the length behavioral assessment (FBA) and imple-
law incorporates federal law (IDEA) of each suspension, the total amount of ment a behavior intervention plan (BIP)
through Cal. Ed Code §48915.5. time the student is suspended, and the unless an FBA and BIP had been con-
proximity of the suspensions to one an- ducted and developed prior to the manifes-
Disabled students may be disciplined in other. 34 CFR §300.536 tation determination. In this case, the BIP
the same manner as non-disabled students shall be modified as necessary.
20 USC §1415(k)(1)(F); 34 CFR §300.530(f)
so long as the method of discipline does All expulsions = change in placement See fact sheet on FBA /BIP.
not constitute a change in placement.
―Placement‖ refers to how and where the No special education student can be If the IEP Team determines that the behav-
disabled student receives services listed in expelled unless the district follows the ior was not a manifestation of the student’s
her IEP (see fact sheet on special educa- procedures described below. disability, or the student committed
a zero-tolerance offense [as listed previ-
Manifestation Determination ously], then the student can be disciplined
Even if a disabled student meets the legal
At the manifest determination meeting, like a non-disabled student and placed in
criteria for expulsion or suspension, he/she an Interim Alternative Educational Setting
the IEP team will determine whether or
is still entitled to receive a free, appropriate (IAES). The student, however, must still be
public education (FAPE) while suspended not the student’s misconduct was a mani-
festation of her disability. The team will provided with FAPE. A student with special
or expelled for a period of longer than 10 needs may be moved to an IAES for not
days per school year. consider the following two questions:
34 CFR §300.530(b)(2); 34 CFR §300.530 • Whether the conduct in question more than 45 school days if:
was caused by, or had a direct and • The IEP Team determines that behavior
Students not yet found eligible for substantial relationship to the student’s was not a manifestation of the student’s
special education services are eligible disability, or
for the protections afforded to children • The student committed a zero tolerance
• Whether the conduct in question
with disabilities IF the school district offense [see above].
was the direct result of the school 20 USC §1415(k)(1)(C) & (G); 34 CFR §§300.530(g),
had knowledge that the child might district’s failure to implement the 300.531
have a disability, unless the person who student’s IEP. 20 USC § 1415 (k)(1)(E(i); 34 CFR §
holds education rights refused to allow 300.530(e)
an evaluation or refused services. 20 USC
§1415(k)(5). See fact sheet on education Appeals
rights. Any appeal of the manifestation determi-
nation shall result in an expedited due
Change in Placement – manifestation process hearing which shall occur within
determination meeting required If disci- 20 days of the request for a hearing.
pline constitutes a change in placement, 20 USC §1415(k)(4)(B); 34 CFR §300.532(c)
the school district must hold an IEP Team
Meeting within 10 days of the decision to After the Manifestation Determination
discipline the youth in order to determine Meeting
whether the behavior was a manifestation If the IEP team determines that the
of the child’s disability. 34 CFR §300.530(e) student’s behavior was a manifestation
of his/her disability, then the student shall
Which School Disciplinary Punishments return to the placement from which
Constitute a Change in Placement? he/she was removed, unless the parent or
person with education rights agrees to
Some suspensions = change in placement the change in placement, or the student
committed a zero tolerance offense.
If a student is suspended for more than The zero tolerance offenses are:
10 consecutive school days, the suspen- • Possession of a weapon at school or The California Foster Youth Education Task
sionconstitutes a change in placement. at a school function; Force is a coalition of more than 35 organiza-
20 USC §1415(k)(1); 34 CFR §300.536 tions dedicated to improving educational out-
• Possession/use/sale of illegal drugs
comes for foster youth. For more information,
at school or at a school function; please contact Erin Saberi, Casey Family Pro-
Patterns of Suspension
• Infliction of a serious bodily injury grams, at 916.503.2950 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
If the student is suspended on separate
on another person while at school or at
occasions for more than 10 school days Fact sheets produced April 2005. Third edition -
a school function. 20 USC §1415 (k)(1)(G); 34 October 2008.
in a given year, and the suspensions CFR §300.530(g)