The Federal Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) and Colorado State law provide foster students specific protections, including:
- School districts may not withhold records or enrollment because of fees owed (book fines), costs for uniforms, lab fees, etc.
- A school district or school in which a student in out-of-home placement is enrolled shall waive all fees that would otherwise be assessed against the student, including but not limited to any general fees, fees for books, fees for lab work, fees for participation in in-school or extracurricular activities, and fees for before-school or after-school programs.
- Students in foster care are categorically eligible for free lunch and are not required to fill out a free lunch application. If they are eligible for lunch for one day, they are eligible for the entire school year.
- The school district or school shall not limit the opportunity of a student in out-of-home placement to participate in in-school and extracurricular activities and before-school and afterschool programs due to waiver of the participation fees.