An Educational Inter-agency Agreement (EIA) was developed to effectively address educational, developmental or other disabilities, job training and employment issues by including all parties who are involved with a child in the dependency case planning process including Desoto, Manatee & Sarasota School Boards (SB), Department of Children & Families (DCF), Safe Children Coalition (SCC), Manatee County Sheriff’s Office (MSO), Career Source (FW), Agency for Persons with Disability (APD), and Department of Juvenile Justice (DJJ).
SCC case management staff notify all appropriate parties at the time of case planning development and case plan review, including DJJ and APD staff who have a child actively receiving their services. Through substantive information sharing and communication between parties; education and employment outcomes for the youth we serve will improve. Some of the key elements in Circuit 12’s EIA are as follows:
The SB shall enroll youth in state care who have previously been enrolled in Florida public School immediately even if they do not have all necessary paperwork.
Foster parents have the authority to enroll children in their care for school. The “Placement Letter” provided by SCC is sufficient documentation for a foster parent for enrollment and to participate as a “guardian” on behalf of foster child. Parents may use this letter to maintain child in current school for School Choice program.
SCC will provide authorization to foster parents and case workers to provide permission for youth to participate in school clubs, after school activities, sports, and social events.
The SB or DCF/SCC will make every effort to provide school transportation for students in out-of-home care when it is deemed in their best interest to attend a school outside of their attendance zone of the out-of-home care location.
For student who meet the McKinney Act definition, the SB must provide transportation to the school of origin for the remainder of the year when in the student’s best interest.
DCF/SCC will retain the responsibility to coordinate temporary transportation for students to and from school during the time that the SB transportation is being arranged.
SCC will provide the SB a monthly updated list of children in out of home care residing in licensed settings actively enrolled in school and their location and notify SB of changes.
The SB will provide youth attendance records and quarterly academic transcripts to CMs upon request.
SCC will ensure that the School Enrollment Form and its attachments (custody letter) is provided to the school liaison for school age children in SCC custody within 72 hours.
The SB will provide notice to CM staff when district mandated parental correspondence is released.
Subject to being provided appropriate releases, consents and orders from court/legal guardians, current CBHA, psychological, psychiatric, medical evaluations, social work assessments, transitional assessments will be exchanged between the SB and SCC.
All requests for student information by SCC will be accompanied by a signed release from parent or a Shelter Order.
Early Intervention/Post Secondary Education/IL:
SCC and the SB will work to promote education progress and assist students in acquiring essential independent living skills, including readiness for pursuit of higher education goals and/or employment. The SB will assist with the education of youth known to the department, as well as, youth adopted over the age of 13, regarding the availability of financial assistance, to include tuition exemptions.
DCF, MSO, SCC, SB will engage in collaborative efforts for identifying pre-school age youth who may qualify to ensure that early intervention services are provided.
Exceptional Student Education (ESE):
A surrogate parent will be appointed by the SB or Court for a youth who qualifies as soon as the child is determined to be without a parent who can act for youth with consideration given to individuals who know the child and recommendations made by DCF, MSO, SCC and the courts so the surrogate can follow the education of the youth during entire time in state custody.
The CM may refer a child for an assessment. The CM may not sign as the parent or the surrogate for the consent for an evaluation of an IEP or authorizing participation in program.
The SB will offer training to individuals desiring to become educational surrogate parents and will allow Guardians ad Litem (GALs) and foster parents to attend the trainings offered through the SB.
The SB will consult with CMs, supervisors, GALs, caregivers or other interested parties at their request regarding the programs available for Exceptional Students
***Terms of this EIA will continue through 6/30/19 and will be reviewed annually.It is available in it’s entirety on the J-drive