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Information Item
DATE: Tuesday, March 24, 2015
TO: School Board Members
FROM: Jeff Eakins, Acting Superintendent
Fostering Education in Hillsborough County Public Schools (Student Services Division)
Initiative:  The Fostering Education team in School Social Work Services collaborates with partners to support students in licensed foster care.

Goal:  To close the educational achievement gap between students in foster care and their peers to ensure college, career and life-readiness.

Targeted Populations:  Students in local licensed foster care placements.

Timeline:  Fostering Education team's services are provided, developed, and evaluated when students enter foster care (early childhood to adult) and on an on-going basis, until the student is reunified, adopted, or turns the age of 25.            

Professional/Staff Development:  The Fostering Education team informs internal and external stakeholders about their services on a regular basis.  Staff in the Department of Student Services receives information about the team's services on an annual basis and more often as needed.  The team is invited to participate and lead training sessions for Eckerd case managers.  School district personnel will partner for a second time to conduct an Educational Success Fair for foster parents and providers in the community in August 2015 at the Family Place on North Florida Avenue.  The plan is to have the Educational Success Fair become an annual event.

Transferability:  The Fostering Education team meets with individual students to review educational progress, make plans, and discuss opportunities for planning for the future.  When barriers are identified plans are made to resolve them.  Services include counseling, mentoring, tutoring, college and career planning, information-sharing, and coordinating services with internal and external stakeholders.  Students' progress is tracked by grade-level and reviewed by team members, administrators, and partners to adjust services and implement changes when needed.  This locally developed model has been successful and replicated in neighboring Florida counties.

Involvement:  The Fostering Education team works with students, school-based staff members, families, child welfare case managers, and judges to promote stability, joint plans, and goals.

• Increase promotion rates at all grade levels and the percentage of high school graduates • Motivate students to become responsible learners • Challenge and support all students with an appropriate curriculum • Promote a culture of safety, which is free from harassment, bullying, and aggression • Demonstrate "best practices" in all aspects of safety including students, employees, visitors, facilities, transportation, and health
SUBMITTED BY:  Ken Gaughan, Supervisor, School Social Work Services
Holly Saia, Ed.S., Director   Wynne A. Tye
Student Services
(813) 273-7136
  Assistant Superintendent, Student Services
(813) 273-7033
    B 01
Hillsborough County Public Schools (Florida) * Mtg.#20150324_686 (Board Meeting) * Section B Item# 01