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November 2018, Issue 8

Every Student Succeeds Act

On December 10, 2015 the Every Student Succeeds Act was signed into law. The law is meant to uphold critical protections for disadvantaged and high-needs students. It ensures that vital information is provided to educators, families, students, and communities through statewide assessments that measure progress toward higher standards. Additionally, this law requires that children in foster care remain in their school of origin, unless it is determined not to be in their best interest. If transportation is required to keep children in their school of origin, the school will collaborate with the child welfare agency to provide said transportation. Please see the graphic below for more information.

Helping Kids in Care with Holiday Stress

With the holidays quickly approaching it is important to recognize the additional stress this time of year brings to our families. The excitement, anxiety, and anticipation of holiday activities will impact the behaviors of our children in foster care. Additionally, this time of year can trigger grieving the loss of being with their families. Here are some tips for helping children in foster care through the holiday season:

• Communicate - Children need to know what to expect. Let them know the plan and the expectations you have of them.

• Validate their emotions - Let the children know that whatever they may be feeling is okay and you understand.

• Give them space - During the holidays families are more likely to gather. That can be overwhelming for children in foster care. Allow them the space to take it all in. If they want to spend some time in their room, let them know in advance that it is fine to do so.

• Incorporate their traditions - Have the child pick some of their favorite traditions, customs, or memories and include those into your holiday plans.

For more tips on helping children in foster care through the holidays, please follow the link below to the guide created by FosterClub.com

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National Adoption Day

National Adoption Day is a collective national effort to raise awareness of the children waiting in foster care for permanent families. In 2017, 261 children were adopted in Maricopa county. This year it is anticipated that 175 children will be adopted. The event is open to the public. Anyone interested in learning about adoption or foster care is encouraged to attend for more information.

Event Information

When: Saturday, November 17, 2018 from 9 am to 3 pm

Where: Durango Juvenile Court Center

3131 West Durango Street, Phoenix, Arizona

The Giving Tree

DCS’ Giving Tree program provides a personalized way to give holiday gifts to children in foster care, similar to Salvation Army’s Christmas Angel program. DCS provides a large plastic Giving Tree poster (for hanging) with removable leaves. Each leaf contains a child's name, age, gender, sizes, and wish list items. Participants select a leaf from the tree, and purchase gifts for that child. We are requesting that organizations commit to buying gifts for at least 20 children.

If your business or organization is interested, please contact volunteer@azdcs.gov NO LATER THAN Wednesday, October 31,2018. Thank you!

Winter Camp

Resource Fair-Tucson

Special Education Advocacy Workshop

Understanding Trauma Training

Working with Traumatized Children-Northern AZ

Warmline Supports Kinship and Foster Families

The Foster Parent Warmline is available for kinship families and licensed foster parents. While not an emergency number, Warmline staff can assist with information, authorizations for services, timely communication, and support. It is not intended to discourage or replace direct and regular communication between the DCS Specialist and the out-of-home caregiver. You can reach the Warmline by calling 1-877-KIDSNEEDU (1-877-543-7633) and selecting Option 3. Warmline staff are available during business hours. Callers also have the option of leaving a voice message.

The Children's Heart Gallery features Arizona children who are free for adoption and want a forever family. While it is a very effective tool for finding families for our waiting children, it also makes the children vulnerable to negative intrusions into their lives. Please help us protect them. If you recognize any of these children or see them in your community, please respect their privacy.

Meet Rachel

Rachel enjoys going to school and is a stellar student. Excelling in school is nothing new to Rachel. She is good at all subjects in school, consistently maintains A’s and B’s and her favorite class is social studies.

Meet Adrian & Jordin

Adrian has a fascination with ninjas and samurais, saying that he is proud of his samurai skills and costumes. Jordin loves to play at the park, especially when he can play soccer with his best friends.

Meet Manny

Immanuelle, who goes by Manny, loves math and has aspirations of being an engineer when he grows up. Manny says he is proud of getting a certificate signed by President Obama for passing 6th grade and being smart.

AZ Families Thrive is published monthly by the Arizona Department of Child Safety to inform foster, kinship and adoptive families across the state. Ricky Denwood created this edition, please feel free to email with questions, comments or content you may be interested in seeing in future editions. Sign up to receive email updates when new issues are posted.

Interested in becoming a foster or adoptive parent? Call us: 1-877-KIDS-NEEDU (1-877-543-7633) or email us: FosterAdoption@azdcs.gov. Visit us online: www.azkidsneedu.gov.

To report child abuse or neglect: 1-888-SOS-CHILD

Created By
Ricky Denwood
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