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Education Tips for Foster Parents

Here are Some Important Education Tips and Reminders for Foster Parents

Confidentiality

  • Know what personal information you can share with the school.  You don’t want the child’s family problems to become gossip in the teacher’s lounge.
  • Share only information the school needs to best serve the educational needs of your student. 

Create Positive Relationships with Schools

  • Establish a personal relationship with school personnel and especially make friends with the school secretary.  Visit the school.  Don’t be a stranger.  Volunteer, attend PTO meetings etc.  Ask for help from the school and offer to help the school as you are able.
  • Let the school know you are interested in the child’s progress.  Attend parent teacher conferences.
  • Communicate with the school even when there is no  problem.
  • If you believe the school will not listen and that your child’s rights are being violated, contact your case manager, who may then contact a DCS education specialist for assistance.

Working with Students at Home

  • Read, read, read. Read to students, especially younger children, and have them retell you what you read. Let older students read to you. Read fun material as well as school materials. Get students a library card.
  • Have a designated homework time in a quiet place. Use the homework hotline if available in your school system.
  • Check to see if you student’s teachers have on-line means of communicating homework or class activities.
  • Be sure you are aware of how your student is doing in school. Contact the school if you are unsure.
  • With younger students, make sure they know their name, address, and phone number. If students ride a bus, make sure they know their bus number.
  • With younger students, practice skills like crossing the street, stopping at stop signs—don’t assume they already know.
  • Discuss safe rides—make sure students know who can give them a ride.
  • If you have students in high school, make sure you understand the school system’s graduation requirements.
  • Be sure you know the school calendar, especially vacation days, testing days and report card days.

Free and Reduced Lunch and School Fees

  • Children in foster care, who are under the legal responsibility of a foster care agency or court, are eligible for free meals.  Any foster child in the household is eligible for free meals regardless of income.  School fees may also be waived.
  • Any foster child in the household is eligible for free lunch regardless of income and remains eligible for the entire school year regardless of whether they move or exit custody.  
  • As a foster parent, your own children may be eligible for free lunch in addition to the foster children in your home.  More information is available from the local school system.