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Foster Care Liaison Resources

Each school district and open-enrollment charter school in Texas is required to appoint at least one employee to act as a foster care liaison officer.
 
The liaison facilitates the enrollment in or transfer to a public or open-enrollment charter school of any child in the district or area served by the charter school who is in the conservatorship of the state (TEC § 33.904).
 
The 83rd Texas Legislative session added open-enrollment charter schools to an existing law that required districts to designate foster care liaisons. New legislation from that session also required that both districts and charters to submit their foster care liaison’s name and contact information to TEA.
 
Education Service Center, Region 20 Homeless Education is a program designed to provide training and technical assistance to school districts on the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act and proper identification of homeless students. The ESC-20 Homeless Education Program facilitates collaboration between schools and community agencies to ensure that the identified homeless students receive necessary services.
 

Appoint a Liaison

Beginning with the 2014-15 school year submit foster care liaison contact information to TEA through the Texas Education Directory, AskTED.
 
 
All foster care liaisons submitted previously to TEA through the fostercareliaison@tea.texas.gov email inbox are included in the AskTED system and there is no need to re-submit your foster care liaison information to the agency. Make sure to contact your district’s AskTED administrator immediately if there are any changes. If your district's or open-enrollment charter school's designated liaison is not listed in AskTED, contact your administration immediately.
 

TEA Foster Care and Student Success Website

The TEA Foster Care and Student Success website provides resources and information to advance the education of student's impacted by foster care. The resources and materials provide guidance related to the unique circumstances surrounding students who are in the foster care system and attend Texas public schools.
 
 The Foster Care and Student Success Resource Guide can be downloaded from this website. This guide is the product of collaboration with the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services, the Supreme Court of Texas, and the Permanent Judicial Commission for Children, Youth and Families (Children's Commission). This e-guide and training manual contains a variety of key researched-based topics and calls attention to important matters related to the education of students in foster care.
 
 
 
The guide promotes best practices and contains numerous tips, tools, resources and links to more information. All Foster Care Liaisons individuals who interact with students in foster care are encouraged to download and review the valuable information contained within this guide.
 

Child Protective Services (CPS) Education Specialists

The Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS) is divided into 11 regions. Each region has an Education Specialist on staff who serves as the education consultant for the organization and provides assistance to DFPS staff, school staff, and external stakeholders on education issues related to children and youth in foster care. ESC Region 20 is located within Region 8 of the DFPS.
 

Foster Care FAQ

Foster Care Liaison

Yes, the Texas Education Code §33.904 specifies that each school district and open-enrollment charter school is required to appoint at least one employee to serve as a Foster Care Liaison to facilitate the enrollment in or transfer to a public or open-enrollment charter school of any child in the district or area served by the charter school who is in the conservatorship of the state.
 
LEA’s are required to submit the foster care liaison's name and contact information to the Texas Education Agency. 
 
LEAs are required to submit foster care liaison contact information to TEA through the Texas Education Directory, ASKTed.
 
 
School districts submit their foster care liaison contact information through the school district’s AskTED administrator.
 
Charter schools submit their foster care liaison information directly to the Charter School Division at TEA via email (CharterSchools@tea.texas.gov) or phone (512) 463-9575. When submitting information, include the LEA’s foster care liaison’s name, phone number, fax number, and email.
Contact information for foster care liaisons can be downloaded from TEA’s Texas Education Director, ASKTed.
 
The Texas Education Code §33.904 specifies that Foster Care Liaisons are to facilitate the enrollment in or transfer to a public school or open-enrollment charter school of a child in the district or area served by the charter school who is in the conservatorship of the state.
 
Foster Care Liaisons should be aware of all requirements in the Texas Education Code to support the academic success of students in Foster Care and ensure students receive all services they are eligible for; including (but not limited to): school of origin, prompt records transfer, free school meals, transportation, participation in extra curriculum activities, credit recovery, and post-secondary benefits.

 

Department of Family and Protective Services

DFPS divides the state into 11 service regions, while the Education Service Centers are divided into 20 service regions. A map showing the DFPS service regions can be found at the following web address: Foster Care & Student Success - Child Protective Services Education Specialists | Texas Education Agency
ESC-20 is located within DFPS Region 8.
The Texas Department of Family and Protective Services has an Education Specialist within each DFPS region. The role of the education specialist is to serve as a liaison between DFPS and the LEA, support students in foster care on education-related issues, and attend school meetings on behalf of DFPS as needed (Admission, Review, and Dismissal – ARD Meetings, manifestation determination meetings, etc.).
A list of the DFPS education specialists in all the DFPS regions can be found on the DFPS website at the following web address: DFPS - Education Specialists (state.tx.us)

 

Foster Care Coding in PEIMS / Identification

A LEA can utilize the following documents to identify a student as foster care:
  • 2085 from (may accept any form in the 2085 series);
  • Court order naming the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services as the managing conservator of the student, or
  • DFPS Kinship Caregiver Agreement (form 0695).
  • Community-Based Care Placement Form (i.e. Family Tapestry in DFPS Region 8a Bexar County)
 
The Texas Education Agency has developed a resource on PEIMS coding specific to foster care that provides a list of all the acceptable and unacceptable forms. This resource can be downloaded from the Texas Education Agency at the following web address: TEA Foster Care PEIMS Coding Supplemental Guidance (texas.gov)
The Foster Care Liaison for the LEA can email the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services to request a copy of the Letter of Verification for the preschool student. A completed copy of the Verification Letter will be provided to the foster parent/caregiver to give to the LEA.
 
No, foster care coding does not carry over from one academic year to the next. Students must be re-identified and coded as foster care at the beginning of each school year.
No, once a student is coded as foster care it remains for the rest of the academic school year.
No, neither documentation of an Agreement for a Parental Child Safety Placement nor an Authorization Agreement for Nonparent Relative or Voluntary Caregiver serve as documentation that a child is in the conservatorship of the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services.
Yes, the only information the LEA needs from the court order is documentation the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services has been named the managing conservator of the student. Other information from the court order may be removed from the document prior to providing to the school to protect confidential information not needed by the school to support the student’s academic success.
Yes, according to the Texas Education Code §29.081(d), students in foster care should be coded with the “At-Risk” indicator #11, indicating the student is in the custody or care of the Department of Family and Protective Services or has, during the current school year, been referred to the department by a school official, officer of the juvenile court, or law enforcement official.
Note: Students in foster care should be evaluated individually to determine if the student meets the criteria for any additional at-risk indicators.
 
No, unaccompanied refugee minors are in the care of the Health and Human
 
Services Commission (HHSC) and not under the guardianship of the Texas Department of Family and protective services, therefore, they would not be identified as foster care students.
No, PEIMS coding is specific to students in the guardianship of the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services. Students in the foster care system of another state would not be coded as foster care in PEIMS.

**Note, federal benefits, such as free school meals and services required through ESSA, should be provided to foster care a student regardless of the state foster care system the student is part of.

The Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) amended the McKinney-Vento Act to remove the phrase “awaiting foster care placement” from the definition of homelessness; thus children under the conservatorship of the Department of Family and Protective Services awaiting placement would not be coded as homeless.
 
In some situations, students in foster care’s living situation may meet the McKinney-Vento Act’s definition of homelessness, in which case the student would be coded both homeless and foster care. Examples may include:
  • A student in foster care who has run away from a foster care placement.
  • A student in foster care without placement – who may be sleeping in an office or other location meeting the definition of homelessness.

 

School of Origin

Yes, the Texas Education Code §25.001(f) allows for a child placed in foster care to attend the public schools in the district in which the foster parents reside free of any charge to the foster parents or the agency. In addition, a durational residence requirement may not be used to prohibit that child from fully participating in any activity sponsored by the school district. 
 
According to the Texas Education Code §25.001(f),(g), and (g-1), students in foster care may attend the following schools:
  • The attendance area public school in which the foster parents reside
  • The primary or secondary public school the student was enrolled in before the student entered the conservatorship of the Department of Family and Protective Services.
    • Even if the student is placed at a residence outside the attendance area for the school or outside the school district, the student is entitled to continue to attend the school in which the student was enrolled immediately before entering conservatorship until the student successfully completes the highest grade level offered by the school at the time of placement without payment of tuition.
  • The primary or secondary public school a student in foster care is enrolled in, other than the school in which the student was enrolled at the time the student was placed in conservatorship, the student is entitled to continue to attend that school without payment of tuition until the student successfully completes the highest grade level offered by the school at the time of enrollment in the school.
Yes, the Texas Education Code §25.001(g) and (g-1) allow for a student to continue to attend the school enrolled in until the student successfully completes the highest grade level offered by the school at the time of enrollment in the school, regardless of whether the student remains in the conservatorship of the department for the duration of the student's enrollment in the school. 
 

 

Best Interest

A student in foster care may remain at his/her school of origin, even when placed/residing outside of the LEA attendance boundaries, unless it is determined staying in the school of origin is not in the student’s best interest.
The Texas Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS) makes the best interest determination for a student in foster care; however, the LEA can provide valuable feedback to DFPS in making this determination. Teachers, staff members, and the Foster Care Liaison at the LEA can provide valuable feedback on academic and social/emotional considerations that may be impacted if the student moves schools.
Yes, the Texas Association of School Boards (TASB) developed a Student in Foster Care Educational Best Interest document (FFC(EXHIBIT)-RRM) to assist LEAs with providing best interest information to DFPS. TEA has made this document available to all LEAs on their website at the following web address:

FFC(E)-RRM [/Revisions/Numbered Updates/SD.RRM.39/Point Revisions] (texas.gov)

 

Transportation

Yes, the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) amended Title I, Part A of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act to require that LEAs receiving Title IA funds collaborate with state or local child welfare agencies on the development of local procedures for the transportation of students in foster care.
Yes, if it is determined to be in the student’s best interest to remain in the school of origin, transportation is required and should be provided promptly to prevent interruptions in school attendance.
The transportation procedures developed in collaboration with the state or local child welfare agency should identify possible funding options if there are additional costs incurred in providing transportation to children in foster care. ESSA states the LEA will provide transportation to the school of origin if:
  • the local child welfare agency agrees to reimburse the LEA for the cost of such transportation;
  • the LEA agrees to pay for the cost of such transportation; or
  • the LEA and the local child welfare agency agree to share the cost of such transportation.
No, the LEA and DFPS can explore other transportation options, such as: transportation by the foster parent, use of public transportation (bus passes or vouchers), or the use of private transportation companies.
The Texas Association of School Boards (TASB) developed an Individual Transportation Plan Template for Student in Foster Care (FFC(EXHIBIT)-RRM) to assist LEAs with developing transportation plans for students in foster care. TEA has made this document available to all LEAs on their website at the following web address: FFC(E)-RRM [/Revisions/Numbered Updates/SD.RRM.39/Point Revisions] (texas.gov)
 
The Texas Education Agency developed an Every Student Succeeds Act Q&A document, which includes information on the transportation requirements of ESSA. This document can be found at the following web address: Every Student Succeeds Act Q&A (texas.gov)

 

Enrollment

Yes, the Texas Education Code §25.002(g) states that a LEA is required to enroll a child in the conservatorship of the Texas Department of Protective and Regulatory Services (Department of Family Protective Services) without the documentation normally required. The Department of Protective and Regulatory Services is responsible for providing the required documentation to the LEA not later than the 30th day after the date the child is enrolled in the school.
 
Yes, the Texas Department of State Health Services allows for students in foster co be provisionally enrolled for a 30-day time period without the normally required immunizations. During the 30-day provisional enrollment, the Department of Family and Protective Services must ensure the student receives the necessary immunizations (as medically feasible) and the immunization records are submitted to the school.
 
Additional information on provisional enrollment can be found on the Texas Department of State Health Services website at the following web address: FAQs About Immunization Requirements for School Admittance (texas.gov)

 

Absences

Yes, the Texas Education Code §25.087 states a LEA should excuse a student in the conservatorship of the Department of Family and Protective Services from attending school if the student is participating in an activity required by the court, provided that it is not practicable to schedule the participation outside of school hours, or required under a service plan. 
 
Yes, the Texas Education Code §25.0915 requires a school district to offer additional counseling to a student and not refer the student to truancy court if the school determines that the student's truancy is the result of:
  • pregnancy;
  • being in the state foster program;
  • homelessness; or
  • being the principal income earner for the student's family.
 

EDUCATION CODE CHAPTER 25. ADMISSION, TRANSFER, AND ATTENDANCE (texas.gov)

The Texas Association of School Boards (TASB) published an online document in their School Law eSource that provides guidance on Compulsory Attendance and Truancy; the document can be downloaded at the following link: Complusory Attendance and Truancy April 2020 (tasb.org)

 

Withdrawal

The Texas Education Code §25.007 (B)(1) requires school records for a student who is in foster care be transferred to the student's new school not later than the 10th working day after the date the student begins enrollment at the school.
 
The Texas Education Agency Student Attendance Accounting Handbook allows a LEA to withdraw a student from the attendance accounting system on the date the LEA becomes aware the student is no longer a member of the LEA. With proof of enrollment in a different LEA, a retroactive withdrawal is permitted to the day the student enrolled in another LEA. The LEA must update all attendance accounting records affected by such a change. 
 
The LEA Foster Care Liaison should contact the caseworker and/or DFPS Educational Specialist to notify DFPS the student is not attending school. DFPS can advise on the student’s situation and possible change of placement.  The LEA should make contact with DFPS to gain information on the student’s situation prior to withdrawing the student from school.
 
The Texas Education Agency Student Attendance Accounting Handbook allows a LEA decide the withdrawal date for a student who never officially withdrew from school, but whose whereabouts can no longer be determined, according to applicable local policies. 
 

 

Educational Decision Maker

The Texas Family Code Chapter 263.004 requires the Department of Family and Protective Services to file with the court the name and contact information for the individual who has been designated by the department to make educational decisions on behalf of the child.  
 
The Education Decision-Maker 2085 (2085-E) form specifies who the designated educational decision maker is for the student in foster care and provides the contact information for the individual.
The Texas Education Code 25.007(10) requires the LEA to provide notice to the child's educational decision-maker and caseworker regarding events that may significantly impact the education of a child, including:
  • requests or referrals for an evaluation under Section 504, Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (29 U.S.C. Section 794), or special education under Section 29.003;
  • admission, review, and dismissal committee meetings;
  • manifestation determination reviews required by Section 37.004(b);
  • any disciplinary actions under Chapter 37 for which parental notice is required;
  • citations issued for Class C misdemeanor offenses on school property or at school-sponsored activities;
  • reports of restraint and seclusion required by Section 37.0021;
  • use of corporal punishment as provided by Section 37.0011; and
  • appointment of a surrogate parent for the child under Section 29.0151;
 

EDUCATION CODE CHAPTER 25. ADMISSION, TRANSFER, AND ATTENDANCE (texas.gov)

 

Special Education

Yes, the Texas Education Code §25.007(b)(9) requires LEA to accept a referral for special education services made for a student who is in foster care made by a school previously attended by the student, and to provide comparable services to the student during the referral process or until the new school develops an individualized education program for the student. 
 
A surrogate parent is an individual who is appointed to make educational decisions on behalf of children who are or may be eligible for special education services under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act in all matters relating to the identification, evaluation, educational placement, and provision of a free appropriate public education.
 
A student under the managing conservatorship of the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services is considered a ward of the state, necessitating the appointment of a surrogate parent if the child is or may be eligible for special education services. eCFR :: 34 CFR 300.519 -- Surrogate parents. (federalregister.gov)
The Education Service Center, Region 20 Special Education Component has developed a Surrogate Parent Decision-Making Flow Chart, which can be found at the following web address: PowerPoint Presentation (utexas.org)
The Texas Education Agency SpedTex website provides online surrogate parent modules in both English and Spanish, which can be accessed at the following web address: Surrogate Parent Training - SPEDTex
 
The Education Service Center, Region 20 Special Education Component provides information and resources for LEAs on surrogate parents on their website at the following web address: Surrogate Parent Information - Special Education - Education Service Center, Region 20 (ESC-20) (esc20.net)

 

Information Sharing

Yes, the Uninterrupted Scholars Act, passed in 2013, amended FERPA to allow for LEAs to disclose the education records of a student in foster care with representatives of a state or local child welfare agency who are legally responsible for the care of the student.
 
Specific questions on how the Uninterrupted Scholars Act amended FERPA are addressed in a guidance document developed by the United States Department of Education, which can be found at the following link: Uninterrupted Scholars Act (PDF)

 

School Meals

Yes, students who are identified as being in foster care are categorically eligible for receiving free meals in the United States Department of Agriculture child nutrition programs, including the National School Lunch and Breakfast Programs.
The Food and Nutrition Department can utilize the following methods to document a child is in foster care and eligible for free meals:
  • The Foster Care Liaison for the LEA may provide the Food and Nutrition Department with a list of students in foster care enrolled in the LEA. The list should include the child’s name, effective date of benefits, and signature of the appropriate school official. The list may be provided electronically and used as documentation that the students are categorically eligible for free meals. This method for documenting eligibility is not subject to verification in the National School Lunch Program.
  • The LEA may obtain a copy of the Foster Authorization form or appropriate court documentation for that child or obtain a list that identifies the child as a foster child from the appropriate agency or court official. This method for documenting eligibility is not subject to verification in the National School Lunch Program.
  • The household may provide an application containing the child’s name, the household adult signature, and (with) the foster box marked. This method for documenting eligibility is subject to verification in the National School Lunch Program.
  • The household may provide an application that contains the name of the foster student(s) and names of other non-foster students in the household. Households should only mark the “foster” box for the foster student(s) in the household. This method for documenting eligibility is subject to verification in the National School Lunch Program.
 
Additional guidance can be found in the Texas Department of Agriculture’s Administrative Reference Manual for the National School Lunch Program, Section 4: Eligibility Determination Policy and ARM for NSLP (squaremeals.org)
Yes, free meals are provided through the United States Department of Agriculture, which is a federal benefit to all students identified as being in the guardianship of a state’s foster care system.

 

Awarding Credit

The Texas Education Code §25.007(b)(3) requires LEAs to develop procedures for awarding credit, including partial credit if appropriate, for course work, including electives, completed by a student who is in foster care while enrolled at another school.
 
In addition, the Texas Education Code §25.007(b)(11) requires LEAs to develop procedures for allowing a student who is in foster care who was previously enrolled in a course required for graduation the opportunity, to the extent practicable, to complete the course, at no cost to the student, before the beginning of the next school year. 
 

 

CASA

CASA stands for Court Appointed Special Advocate. A CASA volunteer is an individual who is court-appointed to represent a child in foster care’s best interest in court.  In order to make recommendations on a child’s best interest, the CASA volunteer may need to review educational, medical, and other records that provide background information on the child.
Yes, a CASA volunteer is appointed by the court and may request to review educational records and/or speak with school staff who are familiar with the student.
More information about CASA can be found on the Texas CASA website Home - Texas CASA and the Child Advocates San Antonio website Child Advocates San Antonio | Recruit, Train, & Supervise Court Appointed Advocates (casa-satx.org)

 

Early Childhood

Yes, the Texas Education Code §29.153 states that if a child is or ever has been in the conservatorship of the Department of Family and Protective Services following an adversary hearing the child is eligible to attend the LEA’s public preschool program.
 
 
HB 725 of the 87th Texas Legislature expanded free Pre-K eligibility to students from foster care systems from other states who are currently living in Texas. Students who are currently or were ever in another state’s foster care system are now eligible to attend Pre-K at Texas schools.
The Texas Department of Family and Protective Services provide a Letter of Verification for children who are eligible to attend the LEA’s public preschool program. The letter may be accepted by the LEA as documentation the student is or previously has been in the conservatorship of the Department of Family and Protective Services and eligible to attend preschool.
The Foster Care Liaison for the LEA can email the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services to request a copy of the Letter of Verification for the preschool student. A completed copy of the Verification Letter will be provided to the foster parent/caregiver to give to the LEA.
 

 

Higher Education

The Texas Education Code §25.007(b)(12) requires a LEA to review the personal graduation plan and course credit accrual of a student who is in foster care who is not likely to receive a high school diploma before the fifth school year following the student's enrollment in grade nine.
 
In addition, the Texas Education Code §25.007(b)(8) encourages LEAs to provide services for a student who is foster care when applying for admission to postsecondary study and when seeking sources of funding for higher education.
 

EDUCATION CODE CHAPTER 25. ADMISSION, TRANSFER, AND ATTENDANCE (texas.gov)

Yes, the Texas Education Code §28.025(i) allows for an 11th or 12th grade student who is in the conservatorship of the Department of Family and Protective Services who transfers to a different school district and is ineligible to graduate from the district to which the student transfers, the district from which the student transferred shall award a diploma at the student's request, if the student meets the graduation requirements of the district from which the student transferred.
 

EDUCATION CODE CHAPTER 28. COURSES OF STUDY; ADVANCEMENT (texas.gov)

The Texas Education Code §33.007(b)(11) requires that during the first school year a student is enrolled in a high school and again each year after while the student is enrolled in high school, a school counselor must provide information about postsecondary education to the student and the student's parent or guardian, including the availability of education and training vouchers and tuition and fee waivers to attend an institution of higher education for a student who is or was previously in the conservatorship of the Department of Family and Protective Services.
 
 
In addition, the Texas Education Code §25.007(b)(13) requires that a student in foster care who is in grade 11 or 12 be provided information regarding tuition and fee exemptions for dual-credit or other courses provided by a public institution of higher education for which a high school student may earn joint high school and college credit.
 
The ETV Program provides funding and supports to help youth currently or formerly in the conservatorship of DFPS cover education-related expenses, such as: books, supplies, computers, tutoring, transportation.
Yes, a high school student who is at least 16 years old and enrolled in a dual college credit course can apply to the ETV Program. The ETV Program funds can be used to pay for college related expenses such as books, computers and related software, transportation to and from the college, and tutoring services. 
The Department of Family and Protective Services website has additional information on the ETV Program at the following web address: DFPS - Education and Training Voucher Program (ETV) (state.tx.us)
 
BCFS Health and Human Services website has additional information on the ETV Program at the following web address: Texas Education and Training Voucher (ETV) Program | Discover BCFS
The Texas Education Code §54.366 and §54.367 exempts a student from the payment of tuition and fees, including tuition and fees charged by an institution of higher education for a dual credit course, if the student enrolls in a college credit course not later than the student's 25th birthday.
 
The College Fee and Tuition waiver applies to the following students:
  • The student was under the conservatorship of the Department of Family and Protective Services:
    • on the day preceding the student's 18th birthday;
    • on or after the day of the student's 14th birthday, if the student was also eligible for adoption on or after that day;
    • during an academic term in which the student was enrolled in a dual credit course or other course for which a high school student may earn joint high school and college credit;
    • on the day the student graduated from high school or received the equivalent of a high school diploma;
    • on the day preceding:
      • the date the student is adopted, if that date is on or after September 1, 2009; or
      • the date permanent managing conservatorship of the student is awarded to a person other than the student's parent, if that date is on or after September 1, 2009; or
  • has an adoption assistance agreement with DFPS that provided both monthly payments and medical assistance.
 

EDUCATION CODE CHAPTER 54. TUITION AND FEES (texas.gov)

Yes, if a student in foster care enrolls in a dual credit course that allows for the student to earn joint high school and college credit, this will count as the required higher education course to activate the College Tuition and Fee Waiver.
The Texas Department of Family and Protective Services issues the College Tuition and Fee Waiver to eligible students. A signed copy of the waiver may be requested from the Preparation for Adult Living (PAL) staff or the Adoption Eligibility Assistance staff.
The Department of Family and Protective Services website has additional information on the College Tuition and Fee Waiver at the following web address: DFPS - State College Tuition Waiver
The purpose of the PAL program is to help foster care youth and alumni prepare for adulthood, by expanding skills, improving youths' self-esteem and self-confidence, and building community connections. PAL program services include independent living skills, case management, and support services.
The PAL program is intended for youth age 16 to 21 years old.
The Department of Family and Protective Services website has additional information on the PAL Program at the following web address: DFPS - Preparation for Adult Living (PAL) Program (state.tx.us)
 
Regional Preparation for Adult Living (PAL) program staff points of contact can be found on the Texas Department of Family and Protective website at the following web address: DFPS - Regional Preparation for Adult Living (PAL) Coordinators (state.tx.us)
The Texas Department of Family and Protective Services has a contract with BCFS Health and Human Services to provide the PAL program Preparation for Adult Living (PAL) program for all of South Texas, including DFPS Region 8 (ESC-20 area).
 
Information on BCFS, including PAL program activities and contact information can be found on the BCFS website at the following web address: Preparation for Adult Living (PAL) | Discover BCFS
Yes, the Texas Education Code §51.9356 requires each institution of higher education to designate at least one employee of the institution to act as a liaison officer for current and incoming students at the institution who are or were formerly in the conservatorship of the Department of Family and Protective Services. 
 
 
Helping connect a high school student in foster care with the foster care liaison at the institution of higher education the student is planning to attend can assist with smoothing the transition to higher education.

 

Additional Information

The Texas Education Agency Foster Care and Student Success website contains valuable information on laws, guidance, and resources to assist Foster Care Liaisons and LEAs with supporting the academic success of students in foster care.
 

Foster Care & Student Success | Texas Education Agency

 

Child Abuse

Yes, the Texas Family Code, Chapter 261 requires that a professional who has cause to believe that the child has been abused or neglected make a report within 48 hours. A professional may not delegate to or rely on another person to make the report. A professional is anyone licensed or certified by the state or works for an agency or facility licensed or certified by the state and has contact with children as a result of their normal duties, this includes teachers and nurses.
 

FAMILY CODE CHAPTER 261. INVESTIGATION OF REPORT OF CHILD ABUSE OR NEGLECT (texas.gov)

Yes, the Texas Education Code §38.0041 requires LEAs to provide training to increase awareness of issues regarding sexual abuse, sex trafficking, and other maltreatment of children, including prevention techniques and knowledge of likely warning signs indicating that a child may be a victim of sexual abuse, sex trafficking, or other maltreatment.
 

EDUCATION CODE CHAPTER 38. HEALTH AND SAFETY (texas.gov)

Training must be provided, as part of a new employee orientation, to all new LEA employees. The LEA must maintain records that include the name of each school staff member who participated in the training.
Yes, the Texas Family Code, Chapter 261 includes human trafficking in the definition of child abuse. The Texas Education Code §38.0041 requires LEAs to adopt and implement a policy addressing sexual abuse, sex trafficking, and other maltreatment of children.
 
 
The Texas Education Agency website has a list of training resources on their website at the following web address: Child Abuse Prevention an Overview | Texas Education Agency
Yes, the Texas Education Code §38.0042 requires each public school and open-enrollment charter school to post a sign in English and in Spanish that contains the toll-free telephone number operated by the Department of Family and Protective Services to receive reports of child abuse or neglect. The sign must be posted in a clearly visible location in a public area of the school that is readily accessible to students.
 
 
The TEA “No Go Tell” posters may be downloaded in English and Spanish from the TEA Child Abuse Prevention webpage: Child Abuse Prevention an Overview | Texas Education Agency
The Texas Education Agency website has additional information on child abuse available at the following web address: Child Abuse Prevention an Overview | Texas Education Agency
 
The Texas Department of Family and Protective Services has additional information on reporting child abuse on their website at the following web address: Training on Reporting Suspected Abuse or Neglect of a Child (state.tx.us)
 
The Texas Education Agency website has additional information on human trafficking available at the following web address: Human Trafficking of School-aged Children | Texas Education Agency