FosterEd works with our partners to ensure that New Mexico law, regulation, and practice give students in foster care and in the juvenile justice system a wide array of supports for education success.
We currently focus on the following priority areas:
Creating statewide infrastructure to support students in foster care and in the juvenile justice system
- Develop support for ESSA liaisons/points of contact and education decision makers
Ensuring school stability and success
- Students remain in the school of origin and state agencies have clear plans to ensure transportation
- Students who move schools mid-semester to receive credit for work done at their previous school
- Students in foster care and in juvenile justice have opportunities to participate in extracurricular activities
Keeping students safe in school
- Eliminate the use of restraint and seclusion in New Mexico schools
Ensuring school discipline does not create barriers to education
- Students who have prior disciplinary history or juvenile justice involvement are able to enroll in school
- Students have access to education when they are expelled or long-term suspended
In 2017, FosterEd successfully sponsored legislation to begin to address these policy priorities. HB 411 (Gallegos) enables each school district to provide continuous educational support to students in foster care and those involved in the juvenile justice system, and facilitates the successful implementation of landmark federal law, The Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), on their behalf. SB 213/HB 301 (Kernan/Gallegos) provides support to students who face barriers to their educational success through no fault of their own. The bill ensures that homeless students, foster students and other students in the State’s care have a smooth transition between schools with full access to programs and services that are available to all other students. This policy values and acknowledges these students for the work they complete to improve and increase their college and career options.