To help ensure that schools are aware of and able to provide appropriate supports to their migrant student population, WestEd developed and manages the Migrant Student Information Network (MSIN).
The MSIN plays an integral role in the California Department of Education’s (CDE’s) Migrant Education Program, which provides critical academic and support services to children of migrant families across the state. Nearly a third of the nation’s migrant student population lives in California. In addition to being highly mobile, without stable housing, which causes frequent interruptions in schooling, these children often live in poverty and are likely to be English learners. Such conditions can put them at academic risk, leading them to perform below peers in state assessments and to graduate at far lower rates.
Integrated with California’s longitudinal student data system, the MSIN serves as a central student information system for the state’s migrant student population. WestEd has partnered with CDE for almost two decades to support the Migrant Education Program, and help ensure that every migrant student has access to the appropriate education supports they need to succeed in school.
As is the case in each state, the California Department of Education/Migrant Education Office is required to collect and use several types of student information for basic funding, accountability, and subgranting activities. There are unique challenges in accomplishing this for the district and school centers serving migrant students. WestEd is providing services to the California Migrant Education Office to meet those challenges, and collaborates with state, regional, and local agencies to further ensure successful outcomes.
In addition to managing the MSIN, WestEd staff provide training, tools, and technical assistance to help Migrant Education regional administrators locate all eligible migrant students and log data about them into the system. Rather than scrambling to gather all the past student records each time a new migrant student arrives, schools can use the MSIN to quickly retrieve a complete history of each migrant student’s eligibility and service needs — essentially a snapshot of academic achievement, coursework, and special needs or diagnoses.
WestEd also helps ensure that migrant students most at risk of academic failure, such as those identified as English learners or those designated as eligible for special education services, are flagged accordingly so they can be targeted for appropriate assistance.