HB 417

A bill to be entitled
2An act relating to independent living; amending s.
339.013, F.S.; requiring the court to retain
4jurisdiction over a child until the child is 21 years
5of age if the child elects to receive Foundations
6First Program services; providing for an annual
7judicial review; amending s. 39.6012, F.S.; requiring
8assurance in a child's case plan that efforts were
9made to avoid a change in the child's school;
10requiring that the case plan contain procedures for an
11older child to directly access and manage a personal
12allowance; creating s. 39.6015, F.S.; providing
13purpose and legislative intent with respect to the
14provision of services for older children who are in
15licensed care; requiring the documentation of
16assurances that school stability is considered when a
17child in care is moved; providing for the same
18assurances for children with disabilities; defining
19the term "school of origin"; requiring the Department
20of Children and Family Services or the community-based
21provider to provide reimbursement for the costs of
22transportation provided for a child in care; requiring
23changes in a child's school to be minimally
24disruptive; specifying criteria to be considered by
25the department and community-based provider during the
26transition of a child to another school; requiring
27children in care to attend school; requiring scheduled
28appointments to consider the child's school
29attendance; providing penalties for caregivers who
30refuse or fail to ensure that the child attends school
31regularly; specifying who may serve as an education
32advocate; requiring documentation that an education
33advocate or surrogate parent has been designated or
34appointed for a child in care; requiring a child in
35middle school to complete an electronic personal
36academic and career plan; requiring caregivers to
37attend school meetings; specifying requirements for
38individual education transition plan meetings for
39children with disabilities; requiring that a child be
40provided with information relating to the Road-to-
41Independence Program; requiring that the caregiver or
42education advocate attend parent-teacher conferences;
43requiring that a caregiver be provided with access to
44school resources in order to enable a child to achieve
45educational success; requiring the delivery of a
46curriculum model relating to self-advocacy; requiring
47documentation of a child's progress, the services
48needed, and the party responsible for providing
49services; specifying choices for a child with respect
50to diplomas and certificates for high school
51graduation or completion; providing that a child with
52a disability may stay in school until 22 years of age
53under certain circumstances; requiring caregivers to
54remain involved in the academic life of a child in
55high school; requiring documentation of a child's
56progress, the services needed, and the party who is
57responsible for providing services; providing for a
58child to be exposed to job-preparatory instruction,
59enrichment activities, and volunteer and service
60opportunities, including activities and services
61offered by the Department of Economic Opportunity;
62requiring that children in care be afforded
63opportunities to participate in the usual activities
64of school, community, and family life; requiring
65caregivers to encourage and support a child's
66participation in extracurricular activities; requiring
67that transportation be provided for a child; providing
68for the development of a transition plan; specifying
69the contents of a transition plan; requiring that the
70plan be reviewed by the court; requiring that a child
71be provided with specified documentation; requiring
72that the transition plan be coordinated with the case
73plan and a transition plan prepared pursuant to the
74Individuals with Disabilities Education Act for a
75child with disabilities; requiring the creation of a
76notice that specifies the options that are available
77to the child; requiring that community-based care lead
78agencies and contracted providers report specified
79data to the department and Legislature; amending s.
8039.701, F.S.; conforming terminology; specifying the
81required considerations during judicial review of a
82child under the jurisdiction of the court; specifying
83additional documents that must be provided to a child
84and that must be verified at the judicial review;
85requiring judicial review of a transition plan;
86amending s. 409.1451, F.S., relating to the Road-to-
87Independence Program; creating the Foundations First
88Program for young adults who want to remain in care
89after reaching 18 years of age; providing eligibility,
90termination, and reentry requirements for the program;
91requiring a court hearing before termination;
92providing for the development of a transition plan;
93specifying the contents of the transition plan;
94requiring that a young adult be provided with
95specified documentation; requiring that the transition
96plan be coordinated with the case plan and a
97transition plan prepared pursuant to the Individuals
98with Disabilities Education Act for a young adult with
99disabilities; requiring the creation of a notice that
100specifies the options that are available to the young
101adult; requiring annual judicial reviews; creating the
102College Bound Program for young adults who have
103completed high school and have been admitted to an
104eligible postsecondary institution; providing
105eligibility requirements; providing for a stipend;
106requiring satisfactory academic progress for
107continuation of the stipend; providing for
108reinstatement of the stipend; providing for
109portability of services for a child or young adult who
110moves out of the county or out of state; specifying
111data required to be reported to the department and
112Legislature; conforming terminology relating to the
113Independent Living Services Advisory Council;
114providing rulemaking authority to the Department of
115Children and Family Services; amending ss. 409.165,
116409.903, and 420.0004, F.S.; conforming cross-
117references; requiring the department to amend the case
118plan and judicial social service review formats;
119providing for young adults receiving transition
120services to continue to receive existing services
121until December 31, 2011; providing exceptions;
122providing an effective date.
124Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
126     Section 1.  Subsection (2) of section 39.013, Florida
127Statutes, is amended to read:
128     39.013  Procedures and jurisdiction; right to counsel.-
129     (2)  The circuit court has exclusive original jurisdiction
130of all proceedings under this chapter, of a child voluntarily
131placed with a licensed child-caring agency, a licensed child-
132placing agency, or the department, and of the adoption of
133children whose parental rights have been terminated under this
134chapter. Jurisdiction attaches when the initial shelter
135petition, dependency petition, or termination of parental rights
136petition is filed or when a child is taken into the custody of
137the department. The circuit court may assume jurisdiction over
138any such proceeding regardless of whether the child was in the
139physical custody of both parents, was in the sole legal or
140physical custody of only one parent, caregiver, or some other
141person, or was in the physical or legal custody of no person
142when the event or condition occurred that brought the child to
143the attention of the court. When the court obtains jurisdiction
144of any child who has been found to be dependent, the court shall
145retain jurisdiction, unless relinquished by its order, until the
146child reaches 18 years of age. However, if a young adult youth
147petitions the court at any time before his or her 19th birthday
148requesting the court's continued jurisdiction, the juvenile
149court may retain jurisdiction under this chapter for a period
150not to exceed 1 year following the young adult's youth's 18th
151birthday for the purpose of determining whether appropriate
152aftercare support, Road-to-Independence Program, transitional
153support, mental health, and developmental disability services
154that were required to be provided to the young adult before
155reaching 18 years of age, to the extent otherwise authorized by
156law, have been provided to the formerly dependent child who was
157in the legal custody of the department immediately before his or
158her 18th birthday. If a young adult chooses to participate in
159the Foundations First Program, the court shall retain
160jurisdiction until the young adult leaves the program as
161provided for in s. 409.1451(4). The court shall review the
162status of the young adult at least every 12 months or more
163frequently if the court deems it necessary. If a petition for
164special immigrant juvenile status and an application for
165adjustment of status have been filed on behalf of a foster child
166and the petition and application have not been granted by the
167time the child reaches 18 years of age, the court may retain
168jurisdiction over the dependency case solely for the purpose of
169allowing the continued consideration of the petition and
170application by federal authorities. Review hearings for the
171child shall be set solely for the purpose of determining the
172status of the petition and application. The court's jurisdiction
173terminates upon the final decision of the federal authorities.
174Retention of jurisdiction in this instance does not affect the
175services available to a young adult under s. 409.1451. The court
176may not retain jurisdiction of the case after the immigrant
177child's 22nd birthday.
178     Section 2.  Subsections (2) and (3) of section 39.6012,
179Florida Statutes, are amended, and subsection (4) is added to
180that section, to read:
181     39.6012  Case plan tasks; services.-
182     (2)  The case plan must include all available information
183that is relevant to the child's care including, at a minimum:
184     (a)  A description of the identified needs of the child
185while in care.
186     (b)  A description of the plan for ensuring that the child
187receives safe and proper care and that services are provided to
188the child in order to address the child's needs. To the extent
189available and accessible, the following health, mental health,
190and education information and records of the child must be
191attached to the case plan and updated throughout the judicial
192review process:
193     1.  The names and addresses of the child's health, mental
194health, and educational providers;
195     2.  The child's grade level performance;
196     3.  The child's school record;
197     4.  Assurances that the child's placement takes into
198account proximity to the school in which the child is enrolled
199at the time of placement and that efforts were made to allow the
200child to remain in that school if it is in the best interest of
201the child;
202     5.  A record of the child's immunizations;
203     6.  The child's known medical history, including any known
205     7.  The child's medications, if any; and
206     8.  Any other relevant health, mental health, and education
207information concerning the child.
208     (3)  In addition to any other requirement, if the child is
209in an out-of-home placement, the case plan must include:
210     (a)  A description of the type of placement in which the
211child is to be living.
212     (b)  A description of the parent's visitation rights and
213obligations and the plan for sibling visitation if the child has
214siblings and is separated from them.
215     (c)  When appropriate, for a child who is in middle school
216or high school 13 years of age or older, a written description
217of the programs and services that will help the child prepare
218for the transition from foster care to independent living.
219     (d)  A discussion of the safety and the appropriateness of
220the child's placement, which placement is intended to be safe,
221and the least restrictive and the most family-like setting
222available consistent with the best interest and special needs of
223the child and in as close proximity as possible to the child's
225     (4)  The case plan must contain procedures for an older
226child to directly access and manage the personal allowance he or
227she receives from the department in order to learn
228responsibility and participate, to the extent feasible, in age-
229appropriate life skills activities.
230     Section 3.  Section 39.6015, Florida Statutes, is created
231to read:
232     39.6015  Services for older children in care.-
233     (1)  PURPOSE AND INTENT.-The Legislature recognizes that
234education and the other positive experiences of a child are key
235to a successful future as an adult and that it is particularly
236important for a child in care to be provided with opportunities
237to succeed. The Legislature intends that individuals and
238communities become involved in the education of a child in care,
239address issues that will improve the educational outcomes for
240the child, and find ways to ensure that the child values and
241receives a high-quality education. Many professionals in the
242local community understand these issues, and it is the intent of
243the Legislature that biological parents, caregivers, educators,
244advocates, the department and its community-based care
245providers, guardians ad litem, and judges, in fulfilling their
246responsibilities to the child, work together to ensure that an
247older child in care has access to the same academic resources,
248services, and extracurricular and enrichment activities that are
249available to all children. Engaging an older child in a broad
250range of the usual activities of family, school, and community
251life during adolescence will help to empower the child in his or
252her transition into adulthood and in living independently. The
253Legislature intends for services to be delivered in an age-
254appropriate and developmentally appropriate manner, along with
255modifications or accommodations as may be necessary to include
256every child, specifically including a child with a disability.
257It is also the intent of the Legislature that while services to
258prepare an older child for life on his or her own are important,
259these services will not diminish efforts to achieve permanency
260goals of reunification, adoption, or permanent guardianship.
261     (2)  EDUCATION PROVISIONS.-Perhaps more than any other
262population, an older child in care is in need of a quality
263education. The child depends on the school to provide positive
264role models, to provide a network of relationships and
265friendships that will help the child gain social and personal
266skills, and to provide the educational opportunities and other
267activities that are needed for a successful transition into
269     (a)  Definitions.-As used in this section, the term:
270     1.  "Caregiver" has the same meaning as provided in s.
27139.01(10) and also includes a staff member of the group home or
272facility in which the child resides.
273     2.  "School of origin" means the school that the child
274attended before coming into care or the school in which the
275child was last enrolled. If the child is relocated outside the
276area of the school of origin, the department and its community-
277based providers shall provide the necessary support to the
278caregiver so that the child can continue enrollment in the
279school of origin if it is in the best interest of the child.
280     (b)  School stability.-The mobility of a child in care can
281disrupt the educational experience. Whenever a child enters
282care, or is moved from one home to another, the proximity of the
283new home to the child's school of origin shall be considered.
284The case plan must include tasks or a plan for ensuring the
285child's educational stability while in care. As part of this
286plan, the community-based care provider shall document
287assurances that:
288     1.  The appropriateness of the current educational setting
289and the proximity to the school in which the child is enrolled
290at the time of coming into care have been taken into
292     2.  The community-based care provider has coordinated with
293the appropriate local school district to determine if the child
294can remain in the school in which he or she is enrolled.
295     3.  The child in care has been asked about his or her
296educational preferences and needs, including his or her view on
297whether to change schools when the living situation changes.
298     4.  A child with a disability is allowed to continue in an
299appropriate educational setting, regardless of changes to the
300location of the home, and transportation is addressed and
301provided in accordance with the child's individualized education
302program. A child with a disability shall receive the protections
303provided in federal and state law, including timelines for
304evaluations, implementation of an individualized education plan
305or an individual family service plan, and placement in the least
306restrictive environment, even when the child changes school
308     5.  The department and its community-based providers shall
309provide special reimbursement for expenses associated with
310transporting a child to his or her school of origin if the
311school district does not provide transportation or the
312individualized education plan does not include transportation as
313a service. Transportation arrangements shall follow a route that
314is as direct and expedient for the child as is reasonably
316     (c)  School transitions.-A change in schools, if necessary,
317shall be as least disruptive as possible, and the support
318necessary for a successful transition shall be provided by the
319department, the community-based provider, and the caregiver. The
320department and the community-based providers shall work with
321school districts to develop and implement procedures to ensure
322that a child in care:
323     1.  Is enrolled immediately in a new school and can begin
324classes promptly.
325     2.  Does not experience a delay in enrollment and delivery
326of appropriate services due to school or record requirements as
327required by s. 1003.22.
328     3.  Has education records that are comprehensive and
329accurate and that promptly follow the child to a new school.
330     4.  Is allowed to participate in all academic and
331extracurricular programs, including athletics, when arriving at
332a new school in the middle of a school term, even if normal
333timelines have passed or programs are full. A district school
334board or school athletic association, including the Florida High
335School Athletic Association or its successor, may not prevent,
336or create barriers to, the ability of a child in care to
337participate in age-appropriate extracurricular, enrichment, or
338social activities.
339     5.  Receives credit or partial credit for coursework
340completed at the prior school.
341     6.  Has the ability to receive a high school diploma even
342when the child has attended multiple schools that have varying
343graduation requirements.
344     (d)  School attendance.-A child in care shall attend school
345as required by s. 1003.26.
346     1.  The community-based care provider and caregiver shall
347eliminate any barriers to attendance such as required school
348uniforms or school supplies.
349     2.  Appointments and court appearances for a child in care
350shall be scheduled to minimize the effect on the child's
351education and to ensure that the child is not penalized for
352school time or work missed because of court hearings or
353activities related to the child welfare case.
354     3.  A caregiver who refuses or fails to ensure that a child
355who is in his or her care attends school regularly is subject to
356the same procedures and penalties as a parent under s. 1003.27.
357     (e)  Education advocacy.-
358     1.  A child in care shall have an adult caregiver who is
359knowledgeable about schools and children in care and who serves
360as an education advocate to reinforce the value of the child's
361investment in education, to ensure that the child receives a
362high-quality education, and to help the child plan for middle
363school, high school, and postschool training, employment, or
364college. The advocate may be a caregiver, care manager, guardian
365ad litem, educator, or individual hired and trained for the
366specific purpose of serving as an education advocate.
367     2.  A child in care with disabilities who is eligible for
368the appointment of a surrogate parent, as required in s.
36939.0016, shall be assigned a surrogate in a timely manner, but
370no later than 30 days after a determination that a surrogate is
372     3.  The community-based provider shall document in the
373child's case plan that an education advocate has been identified
374for each child in care or that a surrogate parent has been
375appointed for each child in care with a disability.
376     (f)  Academic requirements and support; middle school
377students.-A child must complete the required courses that
378include mathematics, English, social studies, and science in
379order to be promoted from a state school composed of middle
380grades 6, 7, and 8.
381     1.  In addition to other academic requirements, a child
382must complete one course in career and education planning in 7th
383or 8th grade. The course, as required by s. 1003.4156, must
384include career exploration using Florida CHOICES Explorer or
385Florida CHOICES Planner and must include educational planning
386using the online student advising system known as Florida
387Academic Counseling and Tracking for Students at the Internet
388website FACTS.org.
389     a.  Each child shall complete an electronic personalized
390academic and career plan that must be signed by the child, the
391child's teacher, guidance counselor, or academic advisor, and
392the child's parent, caregiver, or other designated education
393advocate. Any designated advocate must have the knowledge and
394training to serve in that capacity.
395     b.  The required personalized academic and career plan must
396inform students of high school graduation requirements, high
397school assessment and college entrance test requirements,
398Florida Bright Futures Scholarship Program requirements, state
399university and Florida College System institution admission
400requirements, and programs through which a high school student
401may earn college credit, including Advanced Placement,
402International Baccalaureate, Advanced International Certificate
403of Education, dual enrollment, career academy opportunities, and
404courses that lead to national industry certification.
405     c.  A caregiver shall attend the parent meeting held by the
406school to inform parents about the career and education planning
407course curriculum and the activities associated with the
409     2.  For a child with a disability, the decision whether to
410work toward a standard diploma or a special diploma shall be
411addressed at the meeting on the individual education transition
412plan conducted during the child's 8th grade or the year the
413child turns 14 years of age, whichever occurs first. The child
414shall be invited to participate in this and each subsequent
415transition plan meeting. At this meeting, the individual
416education transition plan team, including the child, the
417caregiver, and other designated education advocate, shall
418determine whether a standard or special diploma best prepares
419the child for his or her education and career goals after high
421     a.  The team shall plan the appropriate course of study,
422which may include basic education courses, career education
423courses, and exceptional student education courses.
424     b.  The team shall identify any special accommodations,
425modifications, and related services needed to help the child
426participate fully in the educational program.
427     c.  All decisions shall be documented on the individual
428education transition plan, and this information shall be used to
429guide the child's educational program as he or she enters high
431     3.  A caregiver or the community-based care provider shall
432provide the child with all information related to the Road-to-
433Independence Program as provided in s. 409.1451.
434     4.  A caregiver or another designated education advocate
435shall attend parent-teacher conferences and monitor each child's
436academic progress.
437     5.  Each district school board, as required by s. 1002.23,
438shall develop and implement a well-planned, inclusive, and
439comprehensive program to assist parents and families in
440effectively participating in their child's education. A school
441district shall have available resources and services for parents
442and their children, such as family literacy services; mentoring,
443tutorial, and other academic reinforcement programs; college
444planning, academic advisement, and student counseling services;
445and after-school programs. A caregiver shall access these
446resources as necessary to enable the child in his or her care to
447achieve educational success.
448     6.  A child in care, particularly a child with a
449disability, shall be involved and engaged in all aspects of his
450or her education and educational planning and must be empowered
451to be an advocate for his or her education needs. Community-
452based care providers shall enter into partnerships with school
453districts to deliver curriculum on self-determination or self-
454advocacy to engage and empower the child to be his or her own
455advocate, along with support from the caregiver, community-based
456care provider, guardian ad litem, teacher, school guidance
457counselor, and other designated education advocate.
458     7.  The community-based care provider shall document in the
459case plan evidence of the child's progress toward, and
460achievement of, academic, life, social, and vocational skills.
461The case plan shall be amended to fully and accurately reflect
462the child's academic and career plan, identify the services and
463tasks needed to support that plan, and identify the party
464responsible for accomplishing the tasks or providing the needed
466     8.  The community-based care provider shall conduct an
467annual staff meeting for each child who is enrolled in middle
468school. The community-based care provider shall complete an
469independent living assessment to determine the child's skills
470and abilities to become self-sufficient and live independently
471after the first staff meeting conducted after the child enters
472middle school. The assessment must consider those skills that
473are expected to be acquired by a child from his or her school
474setting and living arrangement. The community-based care
475provider must provide the needed services if additional services
476are necessary to ensure that the child obtains the appropriate
477independent living skills. The community-based care provider
478shall document in the case plan evidence of the child's progress
479toward developing independent living skills.
480     (g)  Academic requirements and support; high school
481students.-Graduation from high school is essential for a child
482to be able to succeed and live independently as an adult. In
483Florida, 70 percent of children in care reach 18 years of age
484without having obtained a high school diploma. It is the
485responsibility of the department, its community-based providers,
486and caregivers to ensure that a child in care is able to take
487full advantage of every resource and opportunity in order to be
488able to graduate from high school and be adequately prepared to
489pursue postsecondary education at a college or university or to
490acquire the education and skills necessary to enter the
491workplace. In preparation for accomplishing education and career
492goals after high school, the child shall select the appropriate
493course of study which best meets his or her needs.
494     1.  An older child who plans to attend a college or
495university after graduation must take certain courses to meet
496state university admission requirements. The course requirements
497for state university admission are the same for two Bright
498Futures Scholarship awards, the Florida Academic Scholars award,
499and the Florida Medallion Scholars award. By following this
500course of study, which is required for state university
501admission and recommended if the child intends to pursue an
502associate in arts degree at a Florida College System institution
503and transfer to a college or university to complete a bachelor's
504degree, the child will meet the course requirements for high
505school graduation, state university admission, and two Bright
506Futures Scholarship awards.
507     2.  An older child who plans on a career technical program
508in high school to gain skills for work or continue after
509graduation at a Florida College System institution, technical
510center, or registered apprenticeship program should choose a
511course of study that meets the course requirements for high
512school graduation, the third Bright Futures Scholarship award,
513and the Florida Gold Seal Vocational Scholars award. This course
514of study is recommended if the child intends to pursue a
515technical certificate or license, an associate degree, or a
516bachelor's degree, or wishes to gain specific career training.
517     3.  An older child with a disability may choose to work
518toward a standard diploma, a special diploma, or a certificate
519of completion. The child shall be assisted in choosing a diploma
520option by school and district staff through the development of
521the individual education plan. The diploma choice shall be
522reviewed each year at the child's individual education plan
524     a.  An older child or young adult with a disability who has
525not earned a standard diploma or who has been awarded a special
526diploma, certificate of completion, or special certificate of
527completion before reaching 22 years of age may stay in school
528until he or she reaches 22 years of age.
529     b.  The school district shall continue to offer services
530until the young adult reaches 22 years of age or until he or she
531earns a standard diploma, whichever occurs first, as required by
532the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act.
533     4.  This paragraph does not preclude an older child from
534seeking the International Baccalaureate Diploma or the Advanced
535International Certificate of Education Diploma.
536     5.  Educational guidance and planning for high school shall
537be based upon the decisions made during middle school.
538Caregivers shall remain actively involved in the child's
539academic life by attending parent-teacher conferences and by
540taking advantage of available resources to enable the child to
541achieve academic success.
542     6.  The community-based care provider shall document in the
543case plan evidence of the child's progress toward, and
544achievement of, academic, life, social, and vocational skills.
545The case plan shall be amended to completely reflect the child's
546academic and career plan, identify the services and tasks needed
547to support that plan, and identify the party responsible for
548accomplishing the tasks or providing the needed services.
549     7.  The community-based care provider shall conduct a staff
550meeting at least every 6 months for each child who is enrolled
551in high school. The community-based care provider shall complete
552an independent living assessment to determine the child's skills
553and abilities to become self-sufficient and live independently
554after the first staff meeting conducted after the child enters
555high school. The assessment must consider those skills that are
556expected to be acquired by a child from his or her school
557setting and living arrangement. The community-based care
558provider must provide the needed services if additional services
559are necessary to ensure that the child obtains the appropriate
560independent living skills. Such additional independent living
561skills may include, but not be limited to, training to develop
562banking and budgeting skills, interviewing skills, parenting
563skills, time management or organizational skills, educational
564support, employment training, and personal counseling. The
565community-based care provider shall document in the case plan
566evidence of the child's progress toward developing independent
567living skills.
568     8.  Participation in workforce readiness activities is
569essential for a child in care at the high school level to
570prepare himself or herself to be a self-supporting and
571productive adult. The caregiver and the community-based care
572provider shall ensure that each child:
573     a.  Who is interested in pursuing a career after high
574school graduation is exposed to job-preparatory instruction in
575the competencies that prepare students for effective entry into
576an occupation, including diversified cooperative education, work
577experience, and job-entry programs that coordinate directed
578study and on-the-job training.
579     b.  Is provided with the opportunity to participate in
580enrichment activities that increase the child's understanding of
581the workplace, to explore careers, and to develop goal-setting,
582decisionmaking, and time-management skills.
583     c.  Is provided with volunteer and service learning
584opportunities in order to develop workplace and planning skills,
585self esteem, and personal leadership skills.
586     d.  Is provided with an opportunity to participate in
587activities and services provided by the Department of Economic
588Opportunity and the regional workforce boards within the
589Division of Workforce Services which prepare all young adults,
590including those with a disability, for the workforce.
591     (3)  EXTRACURRICULAR ACTIVITIES.-An older child in care
592shall be accorded to the fullest extent possible the opportunity
593to participate in the activities of community, school, and
594family life.
595     (a)  A caregiver shall encourage and support participation
596in age-appropriate extracurricular and social activities for an
597older child, including a child with a disability.
598     (b)  A caregiver shall provide transportation for such
599activities, and community-based care providers shall reimburse
600the caregiver for the expenses associated with such activities.
601     (c)  The department and its community-based providers may
602not place an older child in a home if the caregiver does not
603encourage or facilitate participation in and provide
604transportation to the extracurricular activities of the child's
605choice, unless other arrangements can be made by the community-
606based care provider to enable the child's participation in such
608     (d)  A caregiver's license or licensure status is not
609affected by the age-appropriate actions of a child engaging in
610activities while in his or her care.
611     (4)  DEVELOPMENT OF THE TRANSITION PLAN.-If a child is
612planning to leave care upon reaching 18 years of age, during the
613180-day period before the child reaches 18 years of age, the
614department and community-based care provider, in collaboration
615with the caregiver, any other designated education advocate, and
616any other individual whom the child would like to have included,
617shall assist and support the older child in developing a
618transition plan. The transition plan must take into account all
619of the education and other skills achieved by the child in
620middle and high school, must include specific options for the
621child on housing, health insurance, education, local
622opportunities for mentors and continuing support services, and
623workforce support and employment services, and must be reviewed
624by the court during the last review hearing before the child
625reaches 18 years of age. In developing the plan, the department
626and community-based provider shall:
627     (a)  Provide the child with the documentation required in
628s. 39.701(7);
629     (b)  Coordinate with local public and private entities in
630designing the transition plan as appropriate;
631     (c)  Coordinate the transition plan with the independent
632living provisions in the case plan and the Individuals with
633Disabilities Education Act transition plan for a child with a
634disability; and
635     (d)  Create a clear and developmentally appropriate notice
636specifying the options available for a young adult who chooses
637to remain in care for a longer period. The notice must include
638information about what services the child is eligible for and
639how such services may be obtained.
640     (5)  ACCOUNTABILITY.-
641     (a)  The community-based care lead agencies and its
642contracted providers shall report to the department the
643following information:
644     1.  The total number of children in care who are enrolled
645in middle school, high school, adult high school, and GED
646programs and, in a breakdown by age, how many had their living
647arrangements change one time and how many were moved two or more
648times. For the children who were moved, how many had to change
649schools and how many of those changes were due to a lack of
651     2.  For those children for whom transportation was
652provided, how many children were provided transportation, how
653the transportation was provided, how it was paid for, and the
654amount of the total expenditure by the lead agency.
655     3.  The same information required in subparagraphs 1. and
6562., specific to children in care with a disability.
657     4.  In a breakdown by age, for those children who changed
658schools at least once, how many children experienced problems in
659the transition, what kinds of problems were encountered, and
660what steps the lead agency and the caregiver took to remedy
661those problems.
662     5.  In a breakdown by age, out of the total number of
663children in care, the number of children who were absent from
664school more than 10 days in a semester and the steps taken by
665the lead agency and the caregiver to reduce absences.
666     6.  Evidence that the lead agency has established a working
667relationship with each school district in which a child in care
668attends school.
669     7.  In a breakdown by age, out of the total number of
670children in care, the number who have documentation in the case
671plan that either an education advocate or a surrogate parent has
672been designated or appointed.
673     8.  In a breakdown by age, out of the total number of
674children in care, the number of children who have documentation
675in the case plan that they have an education advocate who
676regularly participates in parent-teacher meetings and other
677school-related activities.
678     9.  For those children in care who have finished 8th grade,
679the number of children who have documentation in the case plan
680that they have completed the academic and career plan required
681by s. 1003.4156 and that the child and the caregiver have signed
682the plan.
683     10.  For those children in care who have a disability and
684have finished 8th grade, the number of children who have
685documentation in the case plan that they have had an individual
686education transition plan meeting.
687     11.  In a breakdown by age, the total number of children in
688care who are in middle school or high school. For each age, the
689number of children who are reading at or above grade level, the
690number of children who have successfully completed the FCAT and
691end-of-course assessments, the number of children who have
692dropped out of school, the number of children who have enrolled
693in any dual enrollment or advanced placement courses, and the
694number of children completing the required number of courses,
695assessments, and hours needed to be promoted to the next grade
697     12.  With a breakdown by age, the total number of children
698in care who are in middle school or high school. For each age,
699the number of children who have documentation in the case plan
700that they are involved in at least one extracurricular activity,
701whether it is a school-based or community-based activity,
702whether they are involved in at least one service or volunteer
703activity, and who provides the transportation.
704     13.  The total number of children in care who are 17 years
705of age and who are obtaining services from the lead agency or
706its contracted providers and how many of that total number have
707indicated that they plan to remain in care after turning 18
708years of age, and for those children who plan to leave care, how
709many children have a transition plan.
710     14.  A breakdown of documented expenses for children in
711middle and high school.
712     (b)  Each community-based care lead agency shall provide
713its report to the department by September 30 of each year. The
714department shall compile the reports from each community-based
715care lead agency and provide them to the Legislature by December
71631 of each year, with the first report due to the Legislature on
717December 31, 2012.
718     Section 4.  Subsections (7), (8), and (9) of section
71939.701, Florida Statutes, are amended to read:
720     39.701  Judicial review.-
721     (7)(a)  In addition to paragraphs (1)(a) and (2)(a), the
722court shall hold a judicial review hearing within 90 days after
723a child's youth's 17th birthday. The court shall also issue an
724order, separate from the order on judicial review, that the
725disability of nonage of the child youth has been removed
726pursuant to s. 743.045. The court shall continue to hold timely
727judicial review hearings thereafter. In addition, the court may
728review the status of the child more frequently during the year
729prior to the child's youth's 18th birthday if necessary. At each
730review held under this subsection, in addition to any
731information or report provided to the court, the caregiver
732foster parent, legal custodian, guardian ad litem, and the child
733shall be given the opportunity to address the court with any
734information relevant to the child's best interests, particularly
735as it relates to the requirements of s. 39.6015 and the Road-to-
736Independence Program under s. 409.1451 independent living
737transition services. In addition to any information or report
738provided to the court, the department shall include in its
739judicial review social study report written verification that
740the child has been provided with:
741     1.  Has been provided with A current Medicaid card and has
742been provided all necessary information concerning the Medicaid
743program sufficient to prepare the child youth to apply for
744coverage upon reaching age 18, if such application would be
746     2.  Has been provided with A certified copy of his or her
747birth certificate and, if the child does not have a valid
748driver's license, a Florida identification card issued under s.
750     3.  A social security card and Has been provided
751information relating to Social Security Insurance benefits if
752the child is eligible for these benefits. If the child has
753received these benefits and they are being held in trust for the
754child, a full accounting of those funds must be provided and the
755child must be informed about how to access those funds.
756     4.  Has been provided with information and training related
757to budgeting skills, interviewing skills, and parenting skills.
758     4.5.  Has been provided with All relevant information
759related to the Road-to-Independence Program, including, but not
760limited to, eligibility requirements, information on how forms
761necessary to participate apply, and assistance in gaining
762admission to the program completing the forms. The child shall
763also be informed that, if he or she is eligible for the Road-to-
764Independence Program, he or she may reside with the licensed
765foster family or group care provider with whom the child was
766residing at the time of attaining his or her 18th birthday or
767may reside in another licensed foster home or with a group care
768provider arranged by the department.
769     5.6.  An opportunity to Has an open a bank account, or
770obtain has identification necessary to open an account, and has
771been provided with essential banking and budgeting skills.
772     6.7.  Has been provided with Information on public
773assistance and how to apply.
774     7.8.  Has been provided A clear understanding of where he
775or she will be living on his or her 18th birthday, how living
776expenses will be paid, and in what educational program or school
777he or she will be enrolled in.
778     8.9.  Information related to the ability Has been provided
779with notice of the child youth's right to remain in care until
780he or she reaches 21 years of age petition for the court's
781continuing jurisdiction for 1 year after the youth's 18th
782birthday as specified in s. 39.013(2) and with information on
783how to participate in the Road-to-Independence Program obtain
784access to the court.
785     9.  A letter providing the dates that the child was under
786the jurisdiction of the court.
787     10.  A letter stating that the child was in care, in
788compliance with financial aid documentation requirements.
789     11.  His or her entire educational records.
790     12.  His or her entire health and mental health records.
791     13.  The process for accessing his or her case file.
792     14.10.  Encouragement Has been encouraged to attend all
793judicial review hearings occurring after his or her 17th
795     (b)  At the first judicial review hearing held subsequent
796to the child's 17th birthday, in addition to the requirements of
797subsection (8), the department shall provide the court with an
798updated case plan that includes specific information related to
799the provisions of s. 39.6015, independent living services that
800have been provided since the child entered middle school child's
80113th birthday, or since the date the child came into foster
802care, whichever came later.
803     (c)  At the last judicial review hearing held before the
804child's 18th birthday, in addition of the requirements of
805subsection (8), the department shall provide to the court for
806review the transition plan for a child who is planning to leave
807care after reaching his or her 18th birthday.
808     (d)(c)  At the time of a judicial review hearing held
809pursuant to this subsection, if, in the opinion of the court,
810the department has not complied with its obligations as
811specified in the written case plan or in the provision of
812independent living services as required by s. 39.6015, s.
813409.1451, and this subsection, the court shall issue a show
814cause order. If cause is shown for failure to comply, the court
815shall give the department 30 days within which to comply and, on
816failure to comply with this or any subsequent order, the
817department may be held in contempt.
818     (8)(a)  Before every judicial review hearing or citizen
819review panel hearing, the social service agency shall make an
820investigation and social study concerning all pertinent details
821relating to the child and shall furnish to the court or citizen
822review panel a written report that includes, but is not limited
824     1.  A description of the type of placement the child is in
825at the time of the hearing, including the safety of the child
826and the continuing necessity for and appropriateness of the
828     2.  Documentation of the diligent efforts made by all
829parties to the case plan to comply with each applicable
830provision of the plan.
831     3.  The amount of fees assessed and collected during the
832period of time being reported.
833     4.  The services provided to the caregiver foster family or
834legal custodian in an effort to address the needs of the child
835as indicated in the case plan.
836     5.  A statement that either:
837     a.  The parent, though able to do so, did not comply
838substantially with the case plan, and the agency
840     b.  The parent did substantially comply with the case plan;
842     c.  The parent has partially complied with the case plan,
843with a summary of additional progress needed and the agency
845     6.  A statement from the caregiver foster parent or legal
846custodian providing any material evidence concerning the return
847of the child to the parent or parents.
848     7.  A statement concerning the frequency, duration, and
849results of the parent-child visitation, if any, and the agency
850recommendations for an expansion or restriction of future
852     8.  The number of times a child has been removed from his
853or her home and placed elsewhere, the number and types of
854placements that have occurred, and the reason for the changes in
856     9.  The number of times a child's educational placement has
857been changed, the number and types of educational placements
858which have occurred, and the reason for any change in placement.
859     10.  If the child has entered middle school reached 13
860years of age but is not yet 18 years of age, the specific
861information contained in the case plan related to the provisions
862of s. 39.6015 results of the preindependent living, life skills,
863or independent living assessment; the specific services needed;
864and the status of the delivery of the identified services.
865     11.  Copies of all medical, psychological, and educational
866records that support the terms of the case plan and that have
867been produced concerning the parents or any caregiver since the
868last judicial review hearing.
869     12.  Copies of the child's current health, mental health,
870and education records as identified in s. 39.6012.
871     (b)  A copy of the social service agency's written report
872and the written report of the guardian ad litem must be served
873on all parties whose whereabouts are known; to the caregivers
874foster parents or legal custodians; and to the citizen review
875panel, at least 72 hours before the judicial review hearing or
876citizen review panel hearing. The requirement for providing
877parents with a copy of the written report does not apply to
878those parents who have voluntarily surrendered their child for
879adoption or who have had their parental rights to the child
881     (c)  In a case in which the child has been permanently
882placed with the social service agency, the agency shall furnish
883to the court a written report concerning the progress being made
884to place the child for adoption. If the child cannot be placed
885for adoption, a report on the progress made by the child towards
886alternative permanency goals or placements, including, but not
887limited to, guardianship, long-term custody, long-term licensed
888custody, or independent living, must be submitted to the court.
889The report must be submitted to the court at least 72 hours
890before each scheduled judicial review.
891     (d)  In addition to or in lieu of any written statement
892provided to the court, the caregiver foster parent or legal
893custodian, or any preadoptive parent, shall be given the
894opportunity to address the court with any information relevant
895to the best interests of the child at any judicial review
897     (9)  The court and any citizen review panel shall take into
898consideration the information contained in the social services
899study and investigation and all medical, psychological, and
900educational records that support the terms of the case plan;
901testimony by the social services agency, the parent, the
902caregiver foster parent or legal custodian, the guardian ad
903litem or surrogate parent for educational decisionmaking if one
904has been appointed for the child, and any other person deemed
905appropriate; and any relevant and material evidence submitted to
906the court, including written and oral reports to the extent of
907their probative value. These reports and evidence may be
908received by the court in its effort to determine the action to
909be taken with regard to the child and may be relied upon to the
910extent of their probative value, even though not competent in an
911adjudicatory hearing. In its deliberations, the court and any
912citizen review panel shall seek to determine:
913     (a)  If the parent was advised of the right to receive
914assistance from any person or social service agency in the
915preparation of the case plan.
916     (b)  If the parent has been advised of the right to have
917counsel present at the judicial review or citizen review
918hearings. If not so advised, the court or citizen review panel
919shall advise the parent of such right.
920     (c)  If a guardian ad litem needs to be appointed for the
921child in a case in which a guardian ad litem has not previously
922been appointed or if there is a need to continue a guardian ad
923litem in a case in which a guardian ad litem has been appointed.
924     (d)  Who holds the rights to make educational decisions for
925the child. If appropriate, the court may refer the child to the
926district school superintendent for appointment of a surrogate
927parent or may itself appoint a surrogate parent under the
928Individuals with Disabilities Education Act and s. 39.0016.
929     (e)  The compliance or lack of compliance of all parties
930with applicable items of the case plan, including the parents'
931compliance with child support orders.
932     (f)  The compliance or lack of compliance with a visitation
933contract between the parent and the social service agency for
934contact with the child, including the frequency, duration, and
935results of the parent-child visitation and the reason for any
937     (g)  The compliance or lack of compliance of the parent in
938meeting specified financial obligations pertaining to the care
939of the child, including the reason for failure to comply if such
940is the case.
941     (h)  Whether the child is receiving safe and proper care
942according to s. 39.6012, including, but not limited to, the
943appropriateness of the child's current placement, including
944whether the child is in a setting that is as family-like and as
945close to the parent's home as possible, consistent with the
946child's best interests and special needs, and including
947maintaining stability in the child's educational placement, as
948documented by assurances from the community-based care provider
950     1.  The placement of the child takes into account the
951appropriateness of the current educational setting and the
952proximity to the school in which the child is enrolled at the
953time of placement.
954     2.  The community-based care agency has coordinated with
955appropriate local educational agencies to ensure that the child
956remains in the school in which the child is enrolled at the time
957of placement.
958     (i)  A projected date likely for the child's return home or
959other permanent placement.
960     (j)  When appropriate, the basis for the unwillingness or
961inability of the parent to become a party to a case plan. The
962court and the citizen review panel shall determine if the
963efforts of the social service agency to secure party
964participation in a case plan were sufficient.
965     (k)  For a child who has entered middle school reached 13
966years of age but is not yet 18 years of age, the progress the
967child has made in achieving the goals outlined in s. 39.6015
968adequacy of the child's preparation for adulthood and
969independent living.
970     (l)  If amendments to the case plan are required.
971Amendments to the case plan must be made under s. 39.6013.
972     Section 5.  Section 409.1451, Florida Statutes, is amended
973to read:
974(Substantial rewording of section. See
975s. 409.1451, F.S., for present text).
976     409.1451  The Road-to-Independence Program.-The Legislature
977recognizes that most children and young adults are resilient
978and, with adequate support, can expect to be successful as
979independent adults. Not unlike all young adults, some young
980adults who have lived in care need additional resources and
981support for a period of time after reaching 18 years of age. The
982Legislature intends for these young adults to receive the
983education, training, and health care services necessary for them
984to become self-sufficient through the Road-to-Independence
985Program. A young adult who participates in the Road-to-
986Independence Program may choose to remain in care until 21 years
987of age and receive help achieving his or her postsecondary goals
988by participating in the Foundations First Program, or he or she
989may choose to receive financial assistance to attend college
990through the College Bound Program.
991     (1)  THE FOUNDATIONS FIRST PROGRAM.-The Foundations First
992Program is designed for young adults who have reached 18 years
993of age but are not yet 21 years of age, and who need to finish
994high school or who have a high school diploma, or its
995equivalent, and want to achieve additional goals. These young
996adults are ready to try postsecondary or vocational education,
997try working part-time or full-time, or need help with issues
998that might stand in their way of becoming employed. Young adults
999who are unable to participate in any of these programs or
1000activities full time due to an impairment, including behavioral,
1001developmental, and cognitive disabilities, might also benefit
1002from remaining in care longer. The provision of services under
1003this subsection is intended to supplement, not supplant,
1004services available under any other program for which the young
1005adult is eligible, including, but not limited to, Medicaid
1006waiver services, vocational rehabilitation programs, or school
1007system programs. For purposes of this section, the term "child"
1008means an individual who has not attained 21 years of age, and
1009the term "young adult" means a child who has attained 18 years
1010of age but who has not attained 21 years of age.
1011     (a)  Eligibility; termination; and reentry.-
1012     1.  A young adult who was living in licensed care on his or
1013her 18th birthday or who is currently living in licensed care,
1014or who after reaching 16 years of age was adopted from licensed
1015care or placed with a court-approved dependency guardian, and
1016has spent a minimum of 6 months in licensed care within the 12
1017months immediately preceding such placement or adoption, is
1018eligible for the Foundations First Program if he or she is:
1019     a.  Completing secondary education or a program leading to
1020an equivalent credential;
1021     b.  Enrolled in an institution that provides postsecondary
1022or vocational education;
1023     c.  Participating in a program or activity designed to
1024promote, or eliminate barriers to, employment;
1025     d.  Employed for at least 80 hours per month; or
1026     e.  Unable to participate in these programs or activities
1027full time due to a physical, intellectual, emotional, or
1028psychiatric condition that limits participation. Any such
1029restriction to participation must be supported by information in
1030the young adult's case file or school or medical records of a
1031physical, intellectual, or psychiatric condition that impairs
1032the young adult's ability to perform one or more life
1034     2.  The young adult in care must leave the Foundations
1035First Program on the earliest of the date the young adult:
1036     a.  Knowingly and voluntarily withdraws his or her consent
1037to participate;
1038     b.  Leaves care to live in a permanent home consistent with
1039his or her permanency plan;
1040     c.  Reaches 21 years of age;
1041     d.  Becomes incarcerated in an adult or juvenile justice
1042facility; or
1043     e.  In the case of a young adult with a disability, reaches
104422 years of age.
1045     3.  Notwithstanding the provisions of this paragraph, the
1046department may not close a case and the court may not terminate
1047its jurisdiction until it finds, following a hearing held after
1048notice to all parties, that the following criteria have been
1050     a.  Attendance of the young adult at the hearing; or
1051     b.  Findings by the court that:
1052     (I)  The young adult has been informed by the department of
1053his or her right to attend the hearing and has provided written
1054consent to waive this right;
1055     (II)  The young adult has been informed of the potential
1056negative effects of terminating care early, the option to
1057reenter care before reaching 21 years of age, the procedure to,
1058and limitations on, reentering care, the availability of
1059alternative services, and that the young adult has signed a
1060document attesting that he or she has been so informed and
1061understands these provisions;
1062     (III)  The young adult has voluntarily left the program,
1063has not signed the document in sub-sub-subparagraph (II), and is
1064unwilling to participate in any further court proceedings; and
1065     (IV)  The department and the community-based care provider
1066have complied with the case plan and any individual education
1067plan. At the time of this judicial hearing, if, in the opinion
1068of the court, the department and community-based provider have
1069not complied with their obligations as specified in the case
1070plan and any individual education plan, the court shall issue a
1071show cause order. If cause is shown for failure to comply, the
1072court shall give the department and community-based provider 30
1073days within which to comply and, upon failure to comply with
1074this or any subsequent order, the department and community-based
1075provider may be held in contempt.
1076     4.  A young adult who left care at or after reaching his or
1077her 18th birthday, but before reaching age 21, may be
1078automatically readmitted to the program by applying to the
1079community-based care provider. The community-based care provider
1080shall readmit the young adult if he or she is engaged in the
1081programs or activities described in this paragraph. Any
1082additional readmissions require that the young adult petition
1083the court to resume jurisdiction. The department and community-
1084based provider shall update the case plan within 30 days after
1085the young adult comes back into the Foundations First Program.
1086     (b)  Benefits and requirements.-
1087     1.  A stipend shall be available to a young adult who is
1088considered a full-time student or its equivalent by the
1089educational institution in which he or she is enrolled, unless
1090that young adult has a recognized disability preventing full-
1091time attendance. The amount of the award, whether it is being
1092used by a young adult working toward completion of a high school
1093diploma or its equivalent or working toward completion of a
1094postsecondary education program, shall be determined based on an
1095assessment of the funding needs of the young adult. This
1096assessment must consider the young adult's living and
1097educational costs based on the actual cost of attendance, and
1098other grants, scholarships, waivers, earnings, or other income
1099to be received by the young adult. An award shall be available
1100only to the extent that other grants and scholarships are not
1101sufficient to meet the living and educational needs of the young
1102adult, but an award may not be less than $25 in order to
1103maintain Medicaid eligibility for the young adult as provided in
1104s. 409.903.
1105     2.  The young adult must reside in a semi-supervised living
1106arrangement. For the purposes of this requirement, a "semi-
1107supervised living arrangement" includes foster homes, college
1108dormitories, shared housing, semi-supervised apartments,
1109supervised apartments, or another housing arrangement approved
1110by the provider and acceptable to the young adult.
1111     3.  Payment of the stipend shall be made directly on the
1112recipient's behalf in order to secure housing and utilities,
1113with the balance being paid directly to the young adult.
1114     4.  A young adult who so desires may continue to reside
1115with the licensed foster family or group care provider with whom
1116he or she was residing at the time he or she attained his or her
111718th birthday. The department shall pay directly to the foster
1118parent the recipient's costs for room and board services, with
1119the balance paid directly to the young adult.
1120     (c)  Transition plan.-For all young adults during the 180-
1121day period immediately before leaving care, before reaching 21
1122years of age, or after leaving care on or after reaching 21
1123years of age, the department and the community-based care
1124provider, in collaboration with the caregiver, any other
1125designated education advocate, or any other individual whom the
1126young adult would like to include, shall assist and support the
1127young adult in developing a transition plan. The transition plan
1128must take into account all of the education and other
1129achievements of the young adult, include specific options for
1130the young adult for housing, health insurance, education, local
1131opportunities for mentors and continuing support services, and
1132workforce support and employment services, and must be reviewed
1133by the court during the last review hearing before the child
1134leaves care. In developing the plan, the department and
1135community-based provider shall:
1136     1.  Provide the young adult with the documentation required
1137in s. 39.701(7);
1138     2.  Coordinate with local public and private entities in
1139designing the transition plan as appropriate;
1140     3.  Coordinate the transition plan with the independent
1141living provisions in the case plan and the Individuals with
1142Disabilities Education Act transition plan for a young adult
1143with disabilities; and
1144     4.  Create a clear and developmentally appropriate notice
1145specifying the rights of a young adult who is leaving care. The
1146notice must include information about what services the young
1147adult may be eligible for and how such services may be obtained.
1148The plan must clearly identify the young adult's goals and the
1149work that will be required to achieve those goals.
1150     (d)  Periodic reviews for young adults.-
1151     1.  For any young adult who continues to remain in care on
1152or after reaching 18 years of age, the department and community-
1153based provider shall implement a case review system that
1155     a.  A judicial review at least once a year;
1156     b.  The court to maintain oversight to ensure that the
1157department is coordinating with the appropriate agencies, and,
1158as otherwise permitted, maintains oversight of other agencies
1159involved in implementing the young adult's case plan and
1160individual education plan;
1161     c.  The department to prepare and present to the court a
1162report, developed in collaboration with the young adult,
1163addressing the young adult's progress in meeting the goals in
1164the case plan and individual education plan, and shall propose
1165modifications as necessary to further those goals;
1166     d.  The court to determine whether the department and any
1167service provider under contract with the department is providing
1168the appropriate services as identified in the case plan and any
1169individual education plan. If the court decides that the young
1170adult is entitled to additional services in order to achieve the
1171goals enumerated in the case plan, under the department's
1172policies, or under a contract with a service provider, the court
1173may order the department to take action to ensure that the young
1174adult receives the identified services and remediation for any
1175failure to timely provide identified services; and
1176     e.  The young adult or any other party to the dependency
1177case may request an additional hearing or review.
1178     2.  In all permanency hearings or hearings regarding the
1179transition of the young adult from care to independent living,
1180the court shall consult, in an age-appropriate manner, with the
1181young adult regarding the proposed permanency, case plan, and
1182individual education plan for the young adult.
1183     3.  For any young adult who continues to remain in care on
1184or after reaching 18 years of age, the community-based care
1185provider shall provide regular case management reviews that must
1186include at least monthly contact with the case manager.
1187     (e)  Early entry into Foundations First.-A child who has
1188reached 16 years of age but is not yet 18 years of age is
1189eligible for early entry into the program, if he or she meets
1190the eligibility requirements, as determined by the case manager
1191and the department, using procedures and assessments established
1192by rule.
1194     (a)  Purpose.-This program is designed for young adults who
1195are 18 years of age but are not yet 23 years of age, have
1196graduated from high school, have been accepted into a college, a
1197Florida College System institution, or a vocational school, and
1198need minimal support from the state other than the financial
1199resources to attend college.
1200     (b)  Eligibility; termination; and reentry.-
1201     1.  A young adult who has earned a standard high school
1202diploma or its equivalent as described in s. 1003.43 or s.
12031003.435, has earned a special diploma or special certificate of
1204completion as described in s. 1003.438, or has been admitted for
1205full-time enrollment in an eligible postsecondary educational
1206institution as defined in s. 1009.533, and is 18 years of age
1207but is not yet 23 years of age is eligible for the College Bound
1208Program if he or she:
1209     a.  Was living in care on his or her 18th birthday or is
1210currently living in care, or, after reaching 16 years of age,
1211was adopted from care or placed with a court-approved dependency
1212guardian and has spent a minimum of 6 months in care within the
121312 months immediately preceding such placement or adoption; and
1214     b.  Spent at least 6 months in care before reaching his or
1215her 18th birthday.
1216     2.  A young adult with a disability may attend school part
1217time and be eligible for this program.
1218     3.  A stipend is available to a young adult who is
1219considered a full-time student or its equivalent by the
1220educational institution in which he or she is enrolled, unless
1221that young adult has a recognized disability preventing full-
1222time attendance. The amount of the award shall be determined
1223based on an assessment of the funding needs of the young adult.
1224This assessment must consider the young adult's living and
1225educational costs based on the actual cost of attendance, and
1226other grants, scholarships, waivers, earnings, or other income
1227to be received by the young adult. An award is available only to
1228the extent that other grants and scholarships are not sufficient
1229to meet the living and educational needs of the young adult, but
1230an award may not be less than $25 in order to maintain Medicaid
1231eligibility for the young adult as provided in s. 409.903.
1232     4.  An eligible young adult may receive a stipend for the
1233subsequent academic years if, for each subsequent academic year,
1234the young adult meets the standards by which the approved
1235institution measures a student's satisfactory academic progress
1236toward completion of a program of study for the purposes of
1237determining eligibility for federal financial aid under the
1238Higher Education Act. Any young adult who is placed on academic
1239probation may continue to receive a stipend for one additional
1240semester if the approved institution allows the student to
1241continue in school. If the student fails to make satisfactory
1242academic progress in the semester or term subsequent to the term
1243in which he received academic probation, the stipend assistance
1244is discontinued for the period required for the young adult to
1245be reinstated by the college or university. Upon reinstatement,
1246a young adult who has not yet reached 23 years of age may
1247reapply for financial assistance.
1249     (a)  Emergency assistance is available to assist young
1250adults who were formerly in the care of the department in their
1251efforts to continue to develop the skills and abilities
1252necessary for independent living. Such assistance includes, but
1253is not limited to, the following:
1254     1.  Mentoring and tutoring.
1255     2.  Mental health services and substance abuse counseling.
1256     3.  Life skills classes, including credit management and
1257preventive health activities.
1258     4.  Parenting classes.
1259     5.  Job and career skills training.
1260     6.  Counselor consultations.
1261     7.  Temporary financial assistance.
1262     8.  Financial literacy skills training.
1264The specific services to be provided under this subparagraph
1265shall be determined by an assessment of the young adult and may
1266be provided by the community-based care provider or through
1267referrals in the community.
1268     (b)  Temporary assistance provided to prevent homelessness
1269shall be provided as expeditiously as possible and within the
1270limitations defined by the department.
1271     (c)  A young adult who is 18 years of age or older but is
1272not yet 23 years of age who leaves care but requests services
1273before reaching 23 years of age is eligible to receive such
1275     (4)  APPEAL PROCESS.-
1276     (a)  The Department of Children and Family Services shall
1277adopt a procedure by which a young adult may appeal an
1278eligibility determination, the department's failure to provide
1279Road-to-Independence Program services, or the termination of
1280such services, if funds for such services or stipend are
1282     (b)  The procedure must be readily accessible to young
1283adults, must provide for timely decisions, and must provide for
1284an appeal to the department. The decision of the department
1285constitutes final agency action and is reviewable by the court
1286as provided in s. 120.68.
1287     (5)  PORTABILITY.-The services provided under this section
1288are portable across county and state lines.
1289     (a)  The services provided for in the original transition
1290plan shall be provided by the county where the young adult
1291resides but shall be funded by the county where the transition
1292plan was initiated. The care managers of the county of residence
1293and the county of origination must coordinate to ensure a smooth
1294transition for the young adult.
1295     (b)  If a child in care under 18 years of age is placed in
1296another state, the sending state is responsible for care
1297maintenance payments, case planning, including a written
1298description of the programs and services that will help a child
129916 years of age or older prepare for the transition from care to
1300independence, and a case review system as required by federal
1301law. The sending state has placement and care responsibility for
1302the child.
1303     (c)  If a young adult formerly in care moves to another
1304state from the state in which he or she has left care due to
1305age, the state shall certify that it will provide assistance and
1306federally funded independent living services to the young adult
1307who has left care because he or she is 18 years of age. The
1308state in which the young adult resides is responsible for
1309services if the state provides the services needed by the young
1311     (6)  ACCOUNTABILITY.-
1312     (a)  The community-based care lead agencies and their
1313contracted providers shall report the following information to
1314the department:
1315     1.  Out of the total number of young adults who remain in
1316care upon reaching 18 years of age, the number of young adults
1317who do not have a high school diploma or its equivalent, a
1318special diploma, or a certificate of completion. Out of those
1319young adults without a diploma or its equivalent, a special
1320diploma, or a certificate of completion, the number of young
1321adults who are receiving assistance through tutoring and other
1322types of support.
1323     2.  Out of the total number of young adults who decided to
1324remain in care after reaching 18 years of age, a breakdown of
1325academic and career goals and type of living arrangement.
1326     3.  The same information required in subparagraphs 1. and
13272., specific to young adults in care with a disability.
1328     4.  Out of the total number of young adults remaining in
1329care, the number of young adults who are enrolled in an
1330educational or vocational program and a breakdown of the types
1331of programs.
1332     5.  Out of the total number of young adults remaining in
1333care, the number of young adults who are working and a breakdown
1334of the types of employment held.
1335     6.  Out of the total number of young adults remaining in
1336care, the number of young adults who have a disability and a
1337breakdown of how many young adults are in school, are training
1338for employment, are employed, or are unable to participate in
1339any of these activities.
1340     7.  Evidence that the lead agency has established a working
1341relationship with the Department of Economic Opportunity and the
1342regional workforce boards within the Division of Workforce
1343Services, the Able Trust, and other entities that provide
1344services related to gaining employment.
1345     8.  Out of the total number of young adults in care upon
1346reaching 18 years of age, the number of young adults who are in
1347the Road-to-Independence Program and a breakdown by the schools
1348or other programs they are attending.
1349     9.  Out of the total number of young adults who are in
1350postsecondary institutions, a breakdown of the types and amounts
1351of financial support received from sources other than the Road-
1352to-Independence Program.
1353     10.  Out of the total number of young adults who are in
1354postsecondary institutions, a breakdown of the types of living
1356     (b)  Each community-based care lead agency shall provide
1357its report to the department and to the Independent Living
1358Services Advisory Council by September 30 of each year. The
1359department shall compile the reports from each community-based
1360care lead agency and provide them to the Legislature by December
136131 of each year, with the first report due to the Legislature on
1362December 31, 2012.
1364secretary shall establish the Independent Living Services
1365Advisory Council for the purpose of reviewing and making
1366recommendations concerning the implementation and operation of
1367the provisions of s. 39.6015 and the Road-to-Independence
1368Program. The advisory council shall function as specified in
1369this subsection until the Legislature determines that the
1370advisory council can no longer provide a valuable contribution
1371to the department's efforts to achieve the goals of the services
1372designed to enable a young adult to live independently.
1373     (a)  Specifically, the advisory council shall assess the
1374implementation and operation of the provisions of s. 39.6015 and
1375the Road-to-Independence Program and advise the department on
1376actions that would improve the ability of those Road-to-
1377Independence Program services to meet the established goals. The
1378advisory council shall keep the department informed of problems
1379being experienced with the services, barriers to the effective
1380and efficient integration of services and support across
1381systems, and successes that the system of services has achieved.
1382The department shall consider, but is not required to implement,
1383the recommendations of the advisory council.
1384     (b)  The advisory council shall report to the secretary on
1385the status of the implementation of the Road-To-Independence
1386Program; efforts to publicize the availability of the Road-to-
1387Independence Program; the success of the services; problems
1388identified; recommendations for department or legislative
1389action; and the department's implementation of the
1390recommendations contained in the Independent Living Services
1391Integration Workgroup Report submitted to the appropriate
1392substantive committees of the Legislature by December 31, 2013.
1393The department shall submit a report by December 31 of each year
1394to the Governor and the Legislature which includes a summary of
1395the factors reported on by the council and identifies the
1396recommendations of the advisory council and either describes the
1397department's actions to implement the recommendations or
1398provides the department's rationale for not implementing the
1400     (c)  Members of the advisory council shall be appointed by
1401the secretary of the department. The membership of the advisory
1402council must include, at a minimum, representatives from the
1403headquarters and district offices of the Department of Children
1404and Family Services, community-based care lead agencies, the
1405Department of Economic Opportunity, the Department of Education,
1406the Agency for Health Care Administration, the State Youth
1407Advisory Board, Workforce Florida, Inc., the Statewide Guardian
1408Ad Litem Office, foster parents, recipients of services and
1409funding through the Road-to-Independence Program, and advocates
1410for children in care. The secretary shall determine the length
1411of the term to be served by each member appointed to the
1412advisory council, which may not exceed 4 years.
1413     (d)  The department shall provide administrative support to
1414the Independent Living Services Advisory Council to accomplish
1415its assigned tasks. The advisory council shall be afforded
1416access to all appropriate data from the department, each
1417community-based care lead agency, and other relevant agencies in
1418order to accomplish the tasks set forth in this section. The
1419data collected may not include any information that would
1420identify a specific child or young adult.
1421     (e)  The advisory council report required under paragraph
1422(b), shall include an analysis of the system of independent
1423living transition services for young adults who reach 18 years
1424of age while in care prior to completing high school or its
1425equivalent and recommendations for department or legislative
1426action. The council shall assess and report on the most
1427effective method of assisting these young adults to complete
1428high school or its equivalent by examining the practices of
1429other states.
1430     (8)  PERSONAL PROPERTY.-Property acquired on behalf of a
1431young adult of this program shall become the personal property
1432of the young adult and is not subject to the requirements of
1433chapter 273 relating to state-owned tangible personal property.
1434Such property continues to be subject to applicable federal
1437The department shall enroll in the Florida Kidcare program,
1438outside the open enrollment period, each young adult who is
1439eligible as described in paragraph (1)(a) and who has not yet
1440reached his or her 19th birthday.
1441     (a)  A young adult who was formerly in care at the time of
1442his or her 18th birthday and who is 18 years of age but not yet
144319 years of age, shall pay the premium for the Florida Kidcare
1444program as required in s. 409.814.
1445     (b)  A young adult who has health insurance coverage from a
1446third party through his or her employer or who is eligible for
1447Medicaid is not eligible for enrollment under this subsection.
1448     (10)  RULEMAKING.-The department shall adopt rules to
1449administer this section. The rules shall provide the procedures
1450and requirements necessary to administer the Road-to-
1451Independence Program. In developing the rules, the department
1452shall consider that the program is for young adults who remain
1453in care for an extended period of time or who are planning to
1454attain postsecondary education and accommodate a young adult's
1455busy life and schedule. The rules shall make the program easy
1456for a qualified young adult to access and facilitate and
1457encourage his or her participation.
1458     Section 6.  Paragraph (f) of subsection (3) of section
1459409.165, Florida Statutes, is amended to read:
1460     409.165  Alternate care for children.-
1461     (3)  With the written consent of parents, custodians, or
1462guardians, or in accordance with those provisions in chapter 39
1463that relate to dependent children, the department, under rules
1464properly adopted, may place a child:
1465     (f)  In an a subsidized independent living situation,
1466subject to the provisions of s. 409.1451(4)(c),
1468under such conditions as are determined to be for the best
1469interests or the welfare of the child. Any child placed in an
1470institution or in a family home by the department or its agency
1471may be removed by the department or its agency, and such other
1472disposition may be made as is for the best interest of the
1473child, including transfer of the child to another institution,
1474another home, or the home of the child. Expenditure of funds
1475appropriated for out-of-home care can be used to meet the needs
1476of a child in the child's own home or the home of a relative if
1477the child can be safely served in the child's own home or that
1478of a relative if placement can be avoided by the expenditure of
1479such funds, and if the expenditure of such funds in this manner
1480is calculated by the department to be a potential cost savings.
1481     Section 7.  Subsection (4) of section 409.903, Florida
1482Statutes, is amended to read:
1483     409.903  Mandatory payments for eligible persons.-The
1484agency shall make payments for medical assistance and related
1485services on behalf of the following persons who the department,
1486or the Social Security Administration by contract with the
1487Department of Children and Family Services, determines to be
1488eligible, subject to the income, assets, and categorical
1489eligibility tests set forth in federal and state law. Payment on
1490behalf of these Medicaid eligible persons is subject to the
1491availability of moneys and any limitations established by the
1492General Appropriations Act or chapter 216.
1493     (4)  A child who is eligible under Title IV-E of the Social
1494Security Act for subsidized board payments, foster care, or
1495adoption subsidies, and a child for whom the state has assumed
1496temporary or permanent responsibility and who does not qualify
1497for Title IV-E assistance but is in foster care, shelter or
1498emergency shelter care, or subsidized adoption. This category
1499includes a young adult who is eligible to receive services under
1500s. 409.1451(5), until the young adult reaches 21 years of age,
1501without regard to any income, resource, or categorical
1502eligibility test that is otherwise required. This category also
1503includes a person who as a child was eligible under Title IV-E
1504of the Social Security Act for foster care or the state-provided
1505foster care and who is a participant in the Road-to-Independence
1507     Section 8.  Subsection (13) of section 420.0004, Florida
1508Statutes, is amended to read:
1509     420.0004  Definitions.-As used in this part, unless the
1510context otherwise indicates:
1511     (13)  "Person with special needs" means an adult person
1512requiring independent living services in order to maintain
1513housing or develop independent living skills and who has a
1514disabling condition; a young adult formerly in foster care who
1515is eligible for services under s. 409.1451(5); a survivor of
1516domestic violence as defined in s. 741.28; or a person receiving
1517benefits under the Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI)
1518program or the Supplemental Security Income (SSI) program or
1519from veterans' disability benefits.
1520     Section 9.  The Department of Children and Family Services
1521shall format the case plan and the judicial review social
1522service report consistent with the provisions of ss. 39.6015 and
1523409.1451, Florida Statutes.
1524     Section 10.  Effective October 1, 2012, a child or young
1525adult who is a participant in the Road-to-Independence Program
1526may continue in the program as it exists through December 31,
15272012. Effective January 1, 2013, a child or young adult who is a
1528participant in the program shall transfer to the program
1529services provided in this act and his or her monthly stipend may
1530not be reduced, the method of payment of the monthly stipend may
1531not be changed, and the young adult may not be required to
1532change his or her living arrangement. These conditions shall
1533remain in effect for a child or young adult until he or she
1534ceases to meet the eligibility requirements under which he or
1535she entered the Road-to-Independence Program. A child or young
1536adult applying or reapplying for the Road-to-Independence
1537Program on or after October 1, 2012, may apply for program
1538services only as provided in this act.
1539     Section 11.  This act shall take effect July 1, 2012.

CODING: Words stricken are deletions; words underlined are additions.