Foster Care Information

Students in Foster Care

The liaison for foster care in Culpeper County Public Schools is Adam Cahuantzi.  He can be reached via email at [email protected] or may be called at 540-825-3677  X3131

From the Virginia Department of Education:
For children and youth in foster care, a change in home placement frequently results in a change in school placement. The educational impact of every school change is significant. Each time students enter new schools, they must adjust to different curricula, different expectations, new friends, and new teachers. Keeping children in the same school:
It provides continuity in education; maintains important relationships at school; provides stability during a traumatic time for the children; and improves educational and life outcomes.

Virginia revised its joint guidance in 2017 (linked below) to implement the provisions of the Fostering Connections to Success and Increasing Adoptions Act of 2008 (Fostering Connections) and the Title I, Part A provisions in the Every Student Succeeds Act of 2015 (ESSA) to ensure school stability for students in foster care.

Both acts mandate educational stability for children in out-of-home care and require child welfare agencies (i.e., department of social services, licensed child-placing agencies, etc.) to coordinate with local educational agencies (school divisions) to ensure educational stability for every child in foster care. 

From the United States Department of Education:

In the U.S. today, approximately 400,000 children and youth are in foster care at any given time and each year about 20,000 of these students emancipate (i.e., age out) of foster care. A positive PK-12 education experience has the potential to be a powerful counterweight to the abuse, neglect, separation, impermanence and other barriers these vulnerable students experience. Additionally, participation in and persistence to a post-secondary credential can enhance their well-being, help them make more successful transitions to adulthood, and increase their chances for personal fulfillment and economic self-sufficiency.

National research shows that children in foster care are at high-risk of dropping out of school and are unlikely to attend or graduate from college. A coordinated effort by education agencies and child welfare agencies is necessary to improve the educational outcomes for students in foster care. Fortunately, the last few years have seen important policy, practice, and advocacy advances that address the education barriers and supports needed for these vulnerable students. Links to information about some of these advances can be found below: