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Solving The Data-Sharing Puzzle: A How To Guide for Cross-System Collaborations Between Child Welfare & Education Effective Models To Improve Well Being.

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Presentation on theme: "Solving The Data-Sharing Puzzle: A How To Guide for Cross-System Collaborations Between Child Welfare & Education Effective Models To Improve Well Being."— Presentation transcript:

1 Solving The Data-Sharing Puzzle: A How To Guide for Cross-System Collaborations Between Child Welfare & Education Effective Models To Improve Well Being Outcomes Maura McInerney, Esq. Education Law Center January 19, 2012


3 Legal Center for Foster Care & Education A joint project of the ABA, Education Law Center, Juvenile Law Center in collaboration with Casey Family Programs, Annie E. Casey Foundation & Stuart Foundation. A national technical assistance resource and information clearinghouse on legal and policy matters affecting the education of children and youth in out-of- home care Website:

4 Data: The Key to Change ….. Only one third receive high school diploma in four years; Twice as likely to drop out – Philadelphia study: 75.2% of youth in care dropped out of high school in 2005 2-4 times as likely to repeat a grade – California study: 83% of children in care in Los Angeles were held back in school by the third grade Significantly below their peers on standardized tests – lower reading levels and lower grades in core academic subjects While 70% of foster youth dream of attending college, 7-13% gain access to any higher education programs and 2% obtain bachelors degrees.

5 What Sharing Data Can Do For You Indentify systemic problems Develop effective policies & priorities to – Improve education outcomes – Increase accountability of systems Target funding (e.g., school stability) – Increase and target $$ for specific goals Educate and facilitate collaboration among multiple systems: Education, Child Welfare, Juvenile Justice, Employment, Job Training, Vocational, etc.

6 What Sharing Student-level Data Can Do: Identify individual educational needs of child Track child over time and through systems Trigger prompt intervention Inform other decisions (e.g., placement and transition goals) Enhance and improve delivery of services to individual child

7 What Child Welfare Can Learn from Education Data Are we meeting our legal mandates for ensuring attendance and school stability? What do we need to change: Is there a correlation between educational failure and type of placement, length of placement, multiple school moves, lack of education advocate, emotional/behavioral problems, failed adoption; impact of school discipline, improve transition planning re education issues. What is the impact of: – Prompt enrollment, school stability, trauma- informed curriculum; positive behavioral supports Longitudinal data: track children through school AND across systems – employment, medical etc.

8 Child Welfare Agencies: Well-being & Permanency Outcomes Identify changes made in performance and practice since previous Statewide Assessment such as initiatives/strategies implemented by the State and ensure compliance with requirements of Fostering Connections, CFSRs, AFCARs **Provide quality assurance results or other data about educational assessments and services (how educational needs are assessed; inclusion of educational needs in the case plan and documentation in the child's record; what services the agency provides, role of bio and foster parent)

9 What Education Can Learn By Sharing Data What are the barriers to educational success for this student population? Are they promptly enrolled, approriately placed? Are there disproportionate referrals to alternative education or cyber programs? Are they able to equally access vocational technical programs, challenging courses etc.? How can schools address common barriers and improve outcomes through new policies, procedures etc. Are additional services/supports needed (e.g., credit recovery) Improve collaborations with child welfare & expand access to child welfare-based services Teacher development training Curriculum changes

10 What Child Welfare Can Learn From Sharing Data School attendance and prompt enrollment School stability School placement & access to services Educational achievement & progress School discipline placements Special Education issues Graduation Rates

11 What Courts Can Learn From Sharing Data Percentage of hearings where the childs education was addressed Number of school transfers while under court jurisdiction Percentage of children in each type of school placement while under court jurisdiction Percentage of children attending school Percentage of children whose GPA declined or improved while under court jurisdiction Percentage of children whose attendance rate declined under court jurisdiction Percentage of children under court jurisdiction ages 0-3 referred to Early Intervention Percentage of children under court jurisdiction ages 0-3 enrolled in Early Intervention Percentage of children under court jurisdiction receiving special education services Percentage of children under court jurisdiction that referred for evaluation for spec ed. Percentage of children suspended from school and impact on living placement Percentage of children expelled from school & impact on placement Percentage of children who graduate from High School/GED programs Percentage of children accepted into a higher education program

12 Look at Your System: What Data Is Being Collected, By Whom and to What End? What is Education Collecting? What is it Sharing? What is Child Welfare Collecting? What is it Sharing? What Are Courts Collecting? What is it Sharing? What is the purpose of the data collection? Where/how is the information maintained? How is it currently being used? What child welfare data relates to the educational outcomes of children in care? How could current data be revised/expanded to improve educational outcomes for children in care? How could it be shared across systems?

13 What Could Systems Collect/Share Type of educational placement: public school, residential settings (on-site school, homebound etc.) School completion rates: Drop out, years to complete high school; reasons for dropping out and at what age Credit Issues: Document problems with credits, obtaining high school diploma Transition Readiness: level of education, life skills training, transition plans.

14 What Could The Systems Collect/Share School Mobility: Whether living placement resulted in school change & re-enrollment Special Ed: Early intervention; evaluations requested/conducted; special education services delivered as child moves; type of learning/devpl disability; decisionmaker Early Childhood Education: Participation in Headstart/other programs: what age/how long Discipline: Suspensions, expulsions, alternative education for disruptive youth

15 What is Education Already Collecting All States Collect Data – NCLB: No Child Left Behind / IDEA Electronically Maintained Student Specific Identification Numbers Each State May Collect – Additional Data (e.g., discipline info, links to other agencies)

16 No Child Left Behind Act: What is It? Seeks to i mprove educational performance and eliminate achievement gaps between groups of students. Requires States to implement accountability systems at the state, school district and school level. Strongly endorses use of longitudinal data: – Each State may incorporate the data from assessments into longitudinal data systems that link student test scores, length of enrollment and graduation records over time. – U.S. Dept. of Ed provides funding to states to develop systems to link records over time OR to identify best educational practices. See

17 Data Already Collected Under NCLB Attendance: Days absent without excuse and days enrolled in school School Enrollment: Tracks student mobility, enrollment delays & grade level designation at time of enrollment Academic Progress* Standardized scores Special Education* Disability & Services Program Template: Participation in remedial & other programs (Title I, HS) * = May be separate data system in your state

18 Student Level Data Gender Race/Ethnicity Student Status – Court placed or alt ed. Economic status (Free/Reduced Lunch Program) Educationally Disadvantaged under Career and Technical Education programs Plan 504 Indicator/Special Ed LEP Participation/English Proficiency/Language Breakdown/Language/ Home Language Code Courses – Advanced courses only Grade retention Expected Graduation, Graduation Status Code & Type of Diploma Expected Post Graduate Activity

19 What Does Each States Data Already Tells Us Number of times children change schools Attendance Grade retention & eligibility for supplemental education services State test proficiency in core subjects Special Education & LEP participation Participation in specific remedial programs Graduation status & expected post-secondary Drop out & graduation rates

20 What Could Education Collect Prompt Enrollment (FL example) Truancy Rates under State Law School Performance (e.g., San Diego) Special Education – (evaluation requested) Academic Progress – expanded definition Program Data – vocational & ESY Course enrollment (beyond AP courses) Credit transfers Discipline placements in school On-time graduation rates & higher ed data

21 Whats Happening In YOUR State Data Quality Campaign – s/index.cfm s/index.cfm Education Commission of the States –

22 Data Sharing Action Plan Step I: Identify Subset of Children Step II: Child Welfare Systems Data Step III: Educations Data: Can Education disaggregate non-student specific data using: – Social security nos. (matched with student IDs) – Residency codes – already in Education system – Address/name cross match – Other system Step IV: Can data be shared across systems? What agreements? What are the barriers? Step V: Can longitudinal data track these children over time & after they age out?

23 Barriers to Sharing Data & Information Across Systems: Real & Perceived Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act 42 U.S.C. § 5101 et. seq.; § 5116 et. seq. Purpose: Provides guidance to states related to their child protective services systems, including: reporting, investigating, supporting collaboration among agencies, and specifying confidentiality and information sharing. Allows for information sharing in two ways: – When a state statute* authorizes the sharing of child welfare information with the school system – When school system has a need for limited information to protect the child from abuse and neglect. *Supports and enhances collaboration among agencies, including linkages with education systems

24 Sharing Information: Real & Perceived Barriers Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act 20 U.S.C. § 1233g; 34 CFR Part 99 Purpose: to protect privacy interests of parents and students regarding the students education records Parents have the right to share or refuse to share records Exceptions to parental consent

25 What Education Records Can Be Shared with Child Welfare: Non-student specific data Directory Information If It qualifies as an education record, – Need parent consent Parental Consent Form (common practice: time of placement) – OR falls under FERPA exceptions to consent (court order is one of the exceptions)

26 FERPA Definitions Education records: Records that are directly related to a student and maintained by an educational agency or institution, or by a party acting for the agency or institution. See 34 CFR § 99.3 Parent : Natural parent, a guardian, or an individual acting as a parent in the absence of a parent or a guardian.

27 FERPA CONSENT NOT REQUIRED: Non-personally identifiable Information Student is identified by non-personal identifier – Identifier itself is not a scrambled Soc. Sec. unless such identifiers are protected by written agreements reflecting generally accepted confidentiality standards within the research community; and – cannot be linked to an student by anyone who does not have access to the linking key; – data file is populated by data from education records in a manner that ensures that identity of any student is not easily traceable.

28 FERPA Exceptions (15) Directory Information (subject to Opt-out) – name, address, phone, date and place of birth, participation in officially recognized activities and sports, and dates of attendance. Law Enforcement Exception: disclosure to state and local authorities within department of juvenile justice Emergency Exception: Disclosure to appropriate parties in connection with emergency to protect health and safety of student or other persons; Judicial order or subpoena: Comply with court order ** – With notice of disclosure to parent/student

29 NEW FERPA Amendments Expanded Studies Exception 34 C.F.R. §99.31(a)(6)): – Permits education agencies and certain specific listed persons (e.g., the Comptroller General of the U.S.) to disclose PII without parental consent to organizations conducting studies for or on behalf of the school entities to develop, validate, or administer predictive tests; administer student aid programs; or improve instruction. – In the absence of parental consent or a court order, the School District shall provide student-specific education records to DHS for the purpose of analysis, study and review in order to improve instruction to these students in collaboration with the School District.

30 NEW FERPA Amendments The regulations also add a new and quite broad definition of education program: – [A]ny program that is principally engaged in the provision of education, including but not limited to early childhood education, elementary and secondary education, postsecondary education, special education, job training, career and technical education, and adult education, and any program that is administered by an educational agency or institution. 34 C.F.R. §99.3.

31 NEW FERPA Amendments Expanded Audit or Evaluation Exception – Permits state and local education agencies and the other specifically listed persons to designate an authorized representative to release PII in connection with an audit or evaluation of Federal or State supported education programs, or for the enforcement or compliance with Federal legal requirements that relate to those programs. 34 C.F.R. §99.35(a)(1). –Authorized representative is any entity or individual so designated to perform these functions. 34 C.F.R. §99.3. This may include a child welfare agency. See 76 F.R. at 75618. DHS is hereby designated as an authorized representative of the School District to perform an audit for evaluation for the purpose of evaluating programs administered by the District that involve and/or impact children known to the Department.

32 FERPA Compliance Tips Parental Consent Form – Must notify parent of what they are sharing and with whom, for what purpose & duration – Writing must be clear & user friendly Court Order – MUST be specific (not CW determines educat.) – Individualized (CANNOT be blanket order) – Reflect notice to FERPA parent – May limit scope of education records or use FERPA definition

33 FERPA MOU Language The School District shall provide student- specific education records (PII) to DHS concerning all children known to DHS for whom (1) the District receives written parental consent or (2) a court order or subpoena has been issued authorizing the disclosure of education records to DHS.

34 FERPA: Proposed Amendments Create a limited exception to parental notification and consent requirements permitting disclosure to child welfare where a student has been adjudicated dependent, the agency has legal custody of the child in out-of-home care, and the childs parent or eligible student has received written notice of the proposed release Permit redisclosure where a child welfare agency obtains education records pursuant to § 99.31(17) to redisclose records to foster parents, group home caseworkers, and other individuals responsible for the education, care or treatment of the student.

35 FERPA: Proposed Amendments Amend eligible student definition in 34 C.F.R. § 99.3 to include youth who meet the McKinney-Vento definition of unaccompanied youth Include IDEA parents in the definition of parent under FERPA. Expand research exception to include child welfare education obligations.

36 Data Sharing Information To Improve Educational Outcomes Education Driven Child Welfare Driven Joint Research Common Data System Accessed by Multiple Agencies (with varying levels of accessibility)

37 Building Political Will Cost of NOT sharing information – Anecdotal evidence, statewide data Better Access = Better Outcomes: Examples – Child welfare, Educational, Permanency & Life Ensure privacy & compliance w/ fidelity Ensure compliance with state mandates – Fostering Connections/McKinney/CFSRs It WILL Reduce Costs: Cost of dropout (prison, crime, drugs) & reduce time in foster care

38 MOU Sharing Aggregated Data MOU sets forth – Purpose and limitations of disclosure (expected use) & duration – Who will access information and how – Emphasize NON- PII data – Technological security protections/firewalls – Retention of records – Governance – Funding

39 Sharing Individual Student Data MOU sets forth – Purpose and limitations of disclosure (expected use) & duration – Who will access information and how – Court order, consent or other exception referenced – Confidentiality protections – Protects against redisclosure to 3 rd parties – Technological security protections/firewalls – Retention of records – Governance & Funding

40 Examples of Data Collection & Information Sharing Washington State Utah West Virginia Pima County, AZ California – Los Angeles Education Coordinating Council – San Diego – Fresno

41 Data-Sharing Systems Data Exchange – Match students using common identifiers such as address DOB student ID numbers Data Warehouse – Link the systems at the state or local level – Each agency reports to common system – Differing levels of access

42 SACWIS: Washington State SACWIS database amended to include: – Enrollment dates – Attendance – School placement/type of enrollment – GPA – Performance – Credits

43 West Virginia, Data Matching Snapshot data match Proficiency across wide array of subjects – Enrollment delays & attendance – Special education services – School stability rates – Standardized tests – GPA – Graduation Rates

44 Data Exchange & Warehouse: Florida All agencies maintain their own system link to common data warehouse Access Issues Exchange protocols Depth of Information Built over time

45 Web-Based Data Sharing San Diego, CA Foster Youth Student Information System – Stores health, education & placement information – Updated daily & provides immediate access – Ed. records of all students in dependent care & in delinquency system – Includes who holds ed rights, standardized test scores, academic achievement etc. – Authorized users BROAD Access SELECTED information

46 Foster Focus, Sacramento CA Data Sharing of Individualized Student Information – Database tracks foster students' grades, credits, course schedules, residential history, shot records, attendance, IEPs, the name of the child's social worker and other information. – 21 school districts across CA, including some of the largest – Orange County and San Francisco Unified – are contracting with SCOE to use the system.Orange County

47 How Can We Do This? Tools – Solving the Data Puzzle: s/solvingthedatapuzzle.pdf s/solvingthedatapuzzle.pdf – Mythbusting: Breaking Down Confidentiality and Decision-Making Barriers to Meet the Education Needs of Children in Foster Care Author: Kathleen McNaught Funding Opportunities

48 Contact Information Maura McInerney Education Law Center 1315 Walnut Street Suite 400 Philadelphia, PA 19107 215-238-6970 Ext. 316

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