Foster Care Student Stability Program

  • Definition of Foster Care

    Foster care means twenty-four hours per day temporary, substitute care for the child placed away from the child’s parents or guardians, and for whom the Department of Children, Youth and Family (DCYF) or a licensed or certified child-placing agency has placement and care responsibility. This includes any out-of-home care (including a relative or suitable person), so long as the child is under the placement and care responsibility of DCYF and placed in out-of-home care by DCYF.

    Rights & Services

    • Attend school in the area they are currently living.
    • When in the best interest of the child, continue at the school they attended (referred to as the school of origin) before they entered care, or the school in which they were last enrolled.
    • Immediate school enrollment and full participation in all school activities for eligible children, even when records normally required for enrollment are not available.
    • Transportation to and from their school of origin.
    • Free school meals.
    • Receive tutoring services focusing on academic assistance.
    • Support with on-time grade progression and graduation.

    Foster Care Resources

    Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI)

    As part of the Student Support division, the Foster Care Education Program partners with educators, foster parents, social workers, state agencies, and advocates as they work to support the whole child through evidence-based, best-practices and collaboration.

    Washington State Department of Children, Youth & Families (DCYF)

    DCYF is the lead agency for state-funded services that support children and families to build resilience and health, and to improve educational outcomes. We accomplish this by partnering with state and local agencies, tribes and other organizations in communities across the state of Washington. Our focus is to support children and families at their most vulnerable points, giving them the tools, they need to succeed.


    Treehouse is dedicated to closing the achievement gap between students in foster care and their peers by providing access to the services they deserve to be successful in school and in life. OSPI contracts with Treehouse to provide Educational Advocacy and Graduation Success programs. 

    Treehouse Guide to supporting students in foster care (PDF).

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Last Modified on July 20, 2023