|Since 1967 the Kansas Migrant Education Program (MEP) has been working to ensure that migrant children fully benefit from the same free public education provided to other children. To achieve this, the MEP supports educational programs for migrant children to help reduce the educational disruptions and other problems that result from repeated moves.
As part of the Kansas State Department of Education, the Kansas MEP is federally funded under Title I, Part C of the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001. Children who qualify for the program are identified and recruited by local agencies (or “projects”) throughout the state, and the local projects are responsible for providing services to children enrolled in the program.
Kansas MEP Organizational Chart 2011-2012
Why do migrant children need special services?
Migrant students have many risk factors in common with other disadvantaged students (e.g., poverty, poor health, learning disabilities), but they also face additional challenges unique to their situations (e.g., disruption of education, poor record-keeping between schools, cultural and language difficulties, and social isolation).
Who qualifies for the migrant education program?
Any child age 3 to 21 who has not yet graduated from high school nor obtained a GED and has moved from one school district to another in the past 3 years to enable the child or a parent, guardian, or spouse to seek or obtain agricultural or fishing work. This work must be temporary or seasonal and it must play an important part in providing a living for the worker and his or her family.
What does the migrant education program do?
State migrant education programs are required to:
- ensure that the special educational needs of migrant children are identified and addressed;
- provide migrant students with the opportunity to meet the same challenging state academic content standards that all children are expected to meet;
- promote interstate and intrastate coordination of services for migrant children, including providing for educational continuity through the timely transfer of pertinent school records; and
- encourage family literacy services for migrant students and their families.
To the extent feasible, all migrant education programs and projects also are required to provide for advocacy and outreach for migratory children and their families on such topics as education, health, nutrition, and social services. They must also provide professional development programs for teachers and other program personnel; family literacy programs; the integration of information technology into MEP activities; and programs to facilitate the transition of secondary school students to post-secondary education or employment.