Policy EDC - Special Programs: Youth in Custody
Issue Date: October 21, 2020
Updated: January 18, 2023
Contracts with the State to provide education for youth in custody
The District may contract with the State Board of Education to provide for education of persons who are either 21 years or younger or are students with disabilities entitled to a free, appropriate public education and who are receiving services from the Department of Human Services or an agency of a Native American tribe or who are being held in a juvenile detention center. The responsibilities of the District, the State Board of Education, and other local service providers regarding serving youth in custody in the District shall be established by the contract. The District may subcontract with local non-district educational service providers for the provision of educational services.
Youth in custody Plan for College and Career Readiness
Each student who is a youth in custody shall have a written plan for college and career readiness defining the student’s academic achievement, which shall specify known in-school and extra-school factors which may affect the student’s school performance. This plan shall be annually reviewed by the student, the student’s parent or guardian, and school staff.
Evaluation of youth in custody
When a student enters a District youth in custody program, the District shall obtain the student’s evaluation records and, if those records are not current, conduct the evaluation as quickly as possible to avoid unnecessary delay in developing a student’s education program. The District has the responsibility for conducting IDEA child find activities for students in a District youth in custody program.
Education programs for youth in custody
A plan for college and career readiness and, as appropriate, an Individualized Education Plan (IEP) shall be developed for youth in custody students based upon the results of the student’s evaluation. This plan shall be developed in cooperation with appropriate representatives of other service agencies working with the student (such as JJS, DSFS, DWS), shall specify the responsibilities of each agency towards the student and shall be signed by the representatives of each agency. The plan shall be reviewed and updated at least once each year or immediately following the student’s transfer from one custody program to another, whichever is sooner.
The District shall provide the student with an education program which conforms as closely as possible to the student’s education plan. Educational services shall be provided in the least restrictive environment appropriate for the student’s behavior and educational performance. Youth in custody who do not require special services beyond those which would be available to them were they not in custody shall be considered part of the District’s regular enrollment and treated accordingly.
Youth in custody shall only assign or allow youth in custody to remain in restrictive or mainstream programs as appropriate considering their custodial status, their past behavior that does not put others at risk, or the inappropriate behavior of other students.
Educational services shall be coordinated with non-custody programs to enable youth in custody to continue their education following discharge from custody.
Enrollment and transfers of youth in custody
Youth in custody receiving educational services by or through the District are students of the District. The District may not establish the District as a student’s alternative district of residency under Policy FBA primarily for the student to receive services in a state-funded youth in custody program.
Youth in custody shall be admitted to classes within five school days following arrival at a new residential placement. If the student’s evaluation and education plan development cannot be completed within five school days, the student shall be enrolled temporarily based upon the best information available. The student’s temporary schedule may be modified to meet the student’s needs after the evaluation and planning process are complete.
When a youth in custody student is released from custody or transferred to another program, the sending program shall bring all available school records up to date and forward them to the receiving program consistent with Policy FBA and Utah Code § 53G-6-604.
Records of youth in custody students
All information maintained regarding a youth in custody student, regardless of the source of the information, is an educational record for purposes of the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act and are considered confidential student records. (See Policy FE.) School records which refer to custodial status, juvenile court records, and related matters shall be kept separate from permanent school records, but are nonetheless educational records if retained by the school or District. Members of the interagency team which design and oversee the student’s education plan shall have access, through team member representatives of the participating agencies, to relevant records of the various agencies. However, the records and information obtained from those records remain the property of the supplying agency and shall not be transferred or shared with other persons or agencies without the permission of the supplying agency.
Credit, transcripts, and diplomas for youth in custody students
Credit earned in accredited youth in custody programs shall be accepted at face value by the District.
Transcripts and diplomas prepared for youth in custody students shall be issued in the name of the District or a school in the District which also serves non-custodial youth and shall not refer in any way to custodial status of the student.
Interagency advisory council
If the District has contracted to provide services for youth in custody, the District shall establish a local interagency advisory council to advise member agencies concerning coordination of youth in custody programs. This council shall include:
1. A representative of the Division of Child and Family Services;
2. A representative of the Division of Juvenile Justice Services;
3. Directors of agencies located in the District such as detention centers, secure lockup facilities, observation and assessment units, and the Utah State Hospital;
4. A representative of community-based alternative programs for custodial juveniles; and
5. A representative of the District.
The council shall adopt bylaws for its operation and shall meet at least quarterly.