On March 23, Governor Ralph Northam ordered the closure of all K-12 schools in Virginia in response to the continued spread of the COVID-19 virus. While this poses many challenges for local school divisions, students, and their families, the Virginia Department of Education (VDOE) has issued guidance and support documents on a variety of topics. One such topic VACo has been contacted about is student placements reimbursed by the Children’s Services Act (CSA).
The CSA establishes a collaborative system of services and funding to assess and meet the strengths and needs of troubled and at-risk youths and their families in the Commonwealth. This includes funding for placements of students in private day schools and private residential special education facilities. The impact of the state of emergency on contractual arrangements with service providers through the CSA remains a matter of local jurisdiction. The Virginia Department of Education (VDOE) has advised local school divisions to work with their local Community Policy and Management Teams (CPMT), local CSA office and partnering private schools to discuss this matter. Additional guidance from VDOE and a letter from Secretary of Education Atif Qarni and be found here and here respectively.
For information and updates related to the closure of public schools, please visit the VDOE web page COVID-19 and Virginia Public Schools. Additional information can be found on VDOE’s list of COVID-19 Frequently Asked Questions.