By Susan Frey
Among the winners and losers under California’s new budget, one student group stands out as a big winner: the state’s 42,000 school-age foster children. Often neglected by their schools as well as their families, foster youth can no longer be ignored.
Schools, districts and county offices will be held accountable for the academic progress of their foster youth as a separate subgroup under the state’s Academic Performance Index. The API measures the performance of a school’s students as a whole, but also tracks the performance of separate subgroups of traditionally low-achieving students; current subgroups are based on ethnicity and family income, and also include disabled students and English learners.