• Specialized Student 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

      •  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


    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.



    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.



    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.






    Elizabeth Guzman 


    Sylvia Corral




    Kristal Green


    Tamara Robinson


  • Contact


    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.  

    333 S. Beaudry Ave., 29th Floor
    Los Angeles, CA 90017
    P: (213) 241-3840
    F: (213) 241-3305