Specialized Support Services
Pupil Services and Attendance (PSA) Counselors and Psychiatric Social Workers (PSW) provide local, integrated, and specialized support services for targeted student populations, including students in foster care, experiencing homelessness, and/or involved in the Juvenile Justice System.
• Increase attendance rates and school engagement
• Increase academic achievement and graduation rates
• Increase School Stability
ADVOCACY AND CASE MANAGEMENT SERVICES
• Comprehensive Academic Assessments to identify and address barriers to educational
• Advocacy for educational rights including immediate school enrollment, to remain in school of
origin, transfer of school records
• Linkage to resources to address identified needs including basic needs such as transportation,
food and housing
STUDENTS SERVED IN FOSTER CARE SYSTEM
Student Support Programs is dedicated to enhancing the educational outcomes of students residing in foster care (e.g., with relative caregivers or foster parents). We provide comprehensive services to improve attendance, maximize educational achievement and the social-emotional well-being of all foster youth. Staff advocate for the educational rights of students in foster care, as well as provide consultation and training to District and school staff, community agencies, and caregivers on issues and legislation specific to students in foster care. PSA Counselors and Psychiatric Social Workers (PSW) provide the following services: case management; facilitate enrollment; promote school stability; aid in the transition to work, vocational school or college; participate in multidisciplinary meetings (i.e., IEP, SSPT, etc.); and engage in research and data collection to support identifying best practices and aligning educational policies for foster youth. In addition, a PSA Counselor is co-located at Edelman Children’s Court. PSA Counselors and PSW who support foster youth report to the Student Support Programs Department of Student Health and Human Services.
SHORT-TERM RESIDENTIAL THERAPEUTIC PROGRAM (STRTP) (FORMERLY KNOWN AS GROUP HOME)
Pupil Services and Attendance (PSA) Counselors and Psychiatric Social Workers (PSW) provide individualized support to students living in Short-Term Residential Therapeutic Programs (STRTP, formerly known as Group Home Scholars Program). These Counselors report to Student Support Programs of Student Health and Human Services. PSA Counselors and PSWs collaborate with the Department of Children and Family Services and the Probation Department in order to provide targeted case management, counseling services, tiered support services and interventions for students residing in STRTP. PSA Counselors and PSWs work to remove barriers that impact student achievement to ensure that all students in STRTP have equal access to an appropriate education and brighter future.
PSA Counselors/PSWs seek to:
• Improve attendance and academic achievement for students
• Facilitate and ensure a successful transition from a juvenile justice facility or other placement
into an educational setting
• Provide dropout prevention and re-engagement services
STUDENTS EXPERIENCING HOMELESSNESS
Student Support Programs oversees a comprehensive support program for students experiencing homelessness. Pupil Services and Attendance (PSA) Counselors and Psychiatric Social Workers (PSW) remove barriers to academic success for homeless students and their families districtwide in compliance with the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act, an integral part of Every Student Succeeds Act. Counselors provide basic resources for identified students experiencing homelessness such as backpacks, school supplies, hygiene kits, transportation assistance and emergency clothing.
The LAUSD identifies students experiencing homelessness via the Student Housing Questionnaire (SHQ), which is required to be in every school enrollment packet and must be sent out to ALL students annually. Students experiencing homelessness are to be identified in MiSiS by September 1st. Throughout the year, Student Support Programs hosts special events for eligible students experiencing homelessness such as Sponsor a Family, Sponsor a Graduate, Graduate Recognition Luncheon, Operation School Bell (OSB) Universal, and the OSB Prom event.
PSA Counselors and PSWs work in partnership with PSA Counselors who are co-located at the Coordinated Entry System (CES) sites for youth and families across LA County to provide a multi-tiered system of support to effectively address the needs of students and families. Support includes educational advocacy and empowerment, short-term, intensive educational case management, and resource coordination. Ultimately, the goal is to connect students to educational/vocational resources that support their aspirations. Additionally, PSA Counselors and Social Workers collaborate with school personnel and community service agencies to ensure schools are in compliance with District policy and federal mandates to identify and support the academic success of students experiencing housing instability.
STUDENTS INVOLVED IN THE JUVENILE JUSTICE SYSTEM
Each year, over a thousand LAUSD students come in contact with Los Angeles County’s Juvenile Justice System. These students are disproportionately African-American or Latino and/or living in poverty. Many of these students have a significant history of exposure to trauma and present emotional, social, and behavioral challenges. Upon release, these students face additional challenges with acceptance and re-integration into our schools. PSA Counselors and PSW focus on ensuring re-enrollment and successful transition into LAUSD schools.
Education Code Section 48645.5, amended on September 30, 2014 states that pupils shall not be denied enrollment or readmission to a public school solely on the basis that he or she has had contact with the juvenile justice system. Our Placement Counselors support the successful transition of students out of juvenile camp, including assistance with re-enrollment. In addition, PSA Counselors are co-located at each of the two Juvenile Courts (Eastlake and Sylmar).
In addition, a PSA Counselor is co-located at Edelman Children’s Court. The LAUSD, works collaboratively with the Los Angeles County Office of Education (LACOE) and the Los Angeles County Probation Department to ensure that protocols and procedures are in place, in order to establish early identification, support appropriate placement upon re-entry into the District, as well as provide Aftercare Case Management services for all LAUSD students.
LOCAL DISTRICT COORDINATORS
CENTRAL EAST NORTHEAST
NORTHWEST SOUTH WEST
- Academic Support and Achievement Program
- A-G Diploma Program
- Commerical Sexual Exploitation of Children (CSEC)
- Homeless Education Office
- Specialized Support Services
- Student Discipline and Expulsion Support Unit
Denise Miranda, Ed.D.
District Homeless and Foster Youth Liaison
District Contact: Denise Miranda, Ed.D.
For additional information on students experiencing homelessness and students in Foster Care, please visit Specialized Support Services.Address:333 S. Beaudry Ave., 29th FloorLos Angeles, CA 90017P: (213) 241-3840F: (213) 241-3305