Key Provisions of AB490

Ensuring Education Rights and Stability for Foster Youth

January 1, 2004 California votes in AB490 which imposes new duties and rights related to education of dependents in foster care including:

  • Allows immediate enrollment of foster youth in school despite missing records, immunizations or uniforms
  • Requires transfer of records from one school to another within 2 days of receiving transfer request
  • Allows foster youth to remain enrolled in and attend his/her school of origin pending resolution of school placement disputes
  • Placement in the least restrictive educational placement
  • Access to same academic resources, services, extracurricular and enrichment activities as all other children
  • All school placement and educational decisions are determined by child's best interest
  • Allows foster children to remain in their school of origin for the duration of the school year when placement changes (if in the child's best interest)
  • County placing agencies to consider educational stability must consider home placements in child's school attendance area
  • Foster care educational liaisons are designated by LEAs to ensure proper placement, transfer and enrollment in school
  • LEAs and social workers/probation officers jointly responsible for timely transfer of records when foster youth change schools
  • Comprehensive schools will be considered first school placement option for foster youth
  • Requires school districts to calculate and accept credit for full or partial coursework satisfactorily completed by the student while attending a public school, juvenile court school, or nonpublic school. Ensures that foster youth are not penalized for absences due to court appearances, placement changes, or related court ordered activities