SB 5184
C 95 L 21
Synopsis as Enacted
Brief Description: Establishing a building point of contact in all K-12 public schools for students in foster care.
Sponsors: Senators Nobles, Wellman, Billig, Carlyle, Conway, Das, Dhingra, Frockt, Hasegawa, Hunt, Kuderer, Liias, Lovelett, Nguyen, Randall, Salda?a, Salomon and Wilson, C.; by request of Superintendent of Public Instruction.
Senate Committee on Early Learning & K-12 Education
House Committee on Education

State law requires each school district to designate a foster care liaison to facilitate district compliance with state and federal laws related to students in out-of-home care. 


District foster care liaisons must collaborate with the Department of Children, Youth, and Families and the Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI) to address educational barriers for these students.  The liaisons have certain responsibilities including coordinating with different entities, attending and providing training, and facilitating certain processes and procedures. 


"Out-of-home care" means placement in a licensed foster family home or group care facility or placement in a home, other than that of the child's parent, guardian, or legal custodian, not required to be licensed.


"Dependent child" means any child who:

  • has been abandoned;
  • is abused or neglected by a person legally responsible for the care of the child;
  • has no parent, guardian, or custodian capable of adequately caring for the child, such that the child is in circumstances which constitute a danger of substantial damage to the child's psychological or physical development; or
  • is receiving extended foster care services.


State law requires each K-12 public school to establish a contact in each elementary, middle, and high school building to identify homeless and unaccompanied homeless youth and connect them with the school district's homeless education liaison.


Each K-12 public school must establish a contact in each elementary, middle, and high school building for students in foster care.  These contacts must be appointed by the principal, in consultation with the district foster care liaison, and are responsible for coordinating services and resources for students in foster care. 


The district foster care liaison is responsible for training contacts.  OSPI must make available best practices for choosing and training contacts. 


References to students in out-of-home care are changed to students who are dependent. 

Votes on Final Passage:
Senate 49 0
House 98 0

July 25, 2021