Best Interest Determination

ESSA requires that State Education Agencies (SEAs) provide assurances that: students in foster care enroll or remain in the school of origin unless there is a determination that it is not in his or her best interest to attend the school of origin. The best interest determination must be based on all relevant factors, including appropriateness of the current educational setting and proximity to the school in which the child is enrolled at the time of placement.

See ESEA § 1111(g)(1)(E) and EC § 48850(a)(1).

Also see Every Student Succeeds (ESSA) page


Best Interest Determination (BID) Joint Letter

Guidance from the CDE and CDSS, Revised March 2021

Foster Youth Education Toolkit 

See Best Interest Determination Procedures & Worksheet

School Stability for California's Youth in Foster Care (December 2020)

A review of laws and local practices including ESSA Transportation Plans, School Stability and Placement Decisions, Child Welfare and Probation Procedures, Education Rights Holders and Best Interest Determination (BID)

All County Letters and Notices

ACIN I-05-21 (February 2, 2021)

Education Stability and Best Interest Determination