COMMONWEALTH OF VIRGINIA
DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION
P. O. BOX 2120
RICHMOND, VIRGINIA 23218-2120
SUPTS. MEMO NO. 50
August 26, 2005
Jo Lynne DeMary
Superintendent of Public Instruction
Education of Children in Foster Care Fiscal Year 2006 Reimbursement of Fiscal Year 2005 Local Costs
Due Date: October 3, 2005
Chapter 951, 2005 Acts of Assembly, (2004-2006 appropriation act), provides an additional state payment for the cost of prior year local operations, as determined by the Department of Education, for certain children placed in foster care. The state funding is provided for pupils who are not residents of the school divisions that are providing their education and (a) who have been placed in foster care or other custodial care within the geographical boundaries of such school division by a Virginia agency, whether state or local, which is authorized under the laws of the commonwealth to place children; (b) who have been placed in an orphanage or childrens home which exercises legal guardianship rights; or (c) who are residents of Virginia and have been placed, not solely for school purposes, in a child-caring institution or group home. This appropriation also provides funding to support children with disabilities attending public schools who have been placed in foster care or other custodial care across jurisdictional lines, as provided by subsection B of Section 22.1-101.1, Code of Virginia.
State foster care funds are also available to school divisions that provide a remedial summer school program for foster children in summer 2005 (fiscal year 2006), pursuant to Section 22.1-253.13:1 C., Code of Virginia. For fiscal year 2006, state payments for remedial summer school are based on the local share (using the composite index) of $380 per eligible foster care child enrolled as a remedial summer school pupil, subject to the availability of state funds. School divisions providing remedial summer school to foster children are entitled to this full per pupil amount for remedial summer school based on the number of reported foster care children who attend remedial summer school; however, this funding is provided through two different funding streams and must be claimed separately from each stream. To obtain the state share of remedial summer school funding, eligible foster care students should be reported on the remedial summer school data collection for FY 2006 (Summer 2005 program) as indicated in Administrative Superintendents Memorandum Number 44, dated August 5, 2005. The same number of eligible foster care students attending remedial summer school programs during Summer 2005 and that are reported pursuant to Administrative Superintendents Memorandum Number 44 should be reported on this data collection.
Superintendents Memorandum Number 44 provides a detailed overview of the remedial summer school program and reporting requirements as required by Section 22.1-199.2, Code of Virginia, and Board of Education regulation 8 VAC 20-630-20. These same program requirements also apply for remedial summer school programs attended by foster care children.
School divisions that choose to report eligible foster care students for the local share of remedial summer school funding must denote the foster childs enrollment in an approved remedial summer school program in the downloadable Excel data collection file provided by the department. When reporting eligible foster care students for remedial summer school funding, each eligible student that is served may only be counted once. Students should be counted in this manner regardless of whether they are served in one or more subject areas or single or multiple sessions during the 2005 remedial summer school program. The funded per pupil amount is based on the average cost of 30 days of instruction per student. There may be students who receive more instruction or some who receive less, but each student should be counted only once for state funding.
Foster Care Students in Fiscal Year 2006 Next Years Reimbursements
Previously, the department notified school divisions in Informational Superintendents Memorandum Number 125 of new requirements as enacted by Chapter 343, 2005 Virginia Acts of Assembly, (Senate Bill 1006), for the enrollment of foster care children in public schools and for the transfer of such students scholastic records upon enrollment. This legislation became effective on July 1, 2005. Consequently, since foster care students are reimbursed in the following fiscal year, students who are eligible to be reimbursed as foster care students pursuant to this provision will be reimbursed in fiscal year 2007 for the fiscal year 2006 local costs for the education of such children in foster care. The current fiscal year 2006 reimbursement of fiscal year 2005 local costs is not affected by this legislation.
Beginning in fiscal year 2007, reporting requirements for the fiscal year 2006 reimbursement certification will incorporate the provisions of Senate Bill 1006, and school divisions should be prepared to report on child counts and financial arrangements with sending or receiving school divisions. This memorandum serves as preliminary notice of these anticipated reporting requirement revisions in fiscal year 2007 to school division personnel responsible for issues related to the enrollment and placement of foster care children in school, as well as school division financial personnel. School divisions should review the provisions of Senate Bill 1006 to be aware of the new enrollment and placement issues that will affect fiscal year 2006 reimbursements. School division personnel who are responsible for enrolling foster care children should work closely with school division finance personnel regarding implementation of Senate Bill 1006. For further information about the changes associated with Senate Bill 1006, please refer to Informational Superintendents Memorandum Number 125.
Attachment A contains applicable Code of Virginia sections and Board of Education regulations for your reference. Please review these sections of the Code of Virginia and regulations carefully to ensure that only qualifying children in foster care are included in the reimbursement report. Please note that this attachment does not contain the provisions of Senate Bill 1006 noted above, because state reimbursements related to this memo are for students in foster care placements in fiscal year 2005 only.
Filing for Reimbursement
As with previous reimbursement reports, a downloadable Excel file has been created to facilitate the collection of data used in the reimbursement of local education costs for children in foster care. Instructions for accessing the Excel file are provided in Attachment B to this memorandum. Please note that Attachment B now contains instructions on reporting foster care child enrollment in an approved remedial summer school program. The Excel file is located on the departments website and can be downloaded from the following address:
All of the forms required for reimbursement, including the division superintendents certification form and specific instructions for entering data, are included in the Excel template. All school divisions must complete the Excel template and return it to the Department of Education by October 3, 2005, even if no local education costs for qualifying foster care children were incurred by the division in fiscal year 2005 and no reimbursement is being requested from fiscal year 2006 state funds. For school divisions not requesting reimbursement, only minimal data entry is required in the Excel template in order to generate the division superintendents certification form indicating that no foster care student days are being claimed for reimbursement.
Please submit the completed Excel file to the department via e-mail at (mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org). Please return a hard copy of the certification form, signed by the division superintendent, to:
Virginia Department of Education
Attention: Budget Office
P.O. Box 2120
Richmond, Virginia 23218-2120
Both submissions (Excel file and signed certification form) are due no later than October 3, 2005.
The Department of Education will make all calculations and disburse fiscal year 2006 foster care entitlements to divisions after the data collected from the 2004-2005 Annual School Report and this memorandum are received from all school divisions and verified by the department. Questions concerning this data collection should be directed to the budget office at (804) 225-2025.