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Migrant Education Harvest of Hope Logo​The federally funded Migrant Education Program (MEP) provides supplemental education and supportive services to migrant children. Funds are available to support projects in districts with documented migrant student populations. MEP projects operate in support of, and in coordination with, the regular school programs. Duri​​ng the summer, comprehensive summer school programs offer migrant children a full range of academic and supportive services.​​​​​​​


The Illinois State Board of Education is considering the possibility of changing the fiscal year 2025 Request for Proposals (RFP) and migrant grants for subsequent years to remove the obligation for recruitment from local programs. Instead, ISBE is considering whether to enter into a statewide recruitment contract to better coordinate recruitment efforts in all counties, increase the consistency of recruiter training, and improve the efficiency and effectiveness of recruiters. At this time, this is only under consideration and no changes are planned. Any official changes will be reflected in the appropriate RFP documents.​​​

 Program Purpose

The Migrant Education Program (MEP) is a federally funded program authorized under Title I, Part C, of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA).

The purpose of the MEP is to:

  • Support high-quality and comprehensive educational programs for migrant children in order to reduce the educational disruption and other problems that result from repeated moves;
  • Ensure that migrant children who move among the states are not penalized in any manner by disparities among the states in curriculum, graduation requirements, and state academic content and student academic achievement standards;
  • Ensure that migrant children are provided with appropriate educational services (including supportive services) that address their special needs in a coordinated and efficient manner;
  • Ensure that migrant children receive full and appropriate opportunities to meet the same challenging state academic content and student academic achievement standards that all children are expected to meet;
  • Design programs to help migrant children overcome educational disruption, cultural and language barriers, social isolation, various health-related problems, and other factors that inhibit their ability to do well in school, and to prepare them to make a successful transition to postsecondary education or employment; and
  • Ensure that migrant children benefit from state and local systemic reforms

 Eligible Children​

Trained recruiters interview families to determine each child's eligibility for the Migrant Education Program. To qualify for the program a migrant child must have meet the following requirements:

  • Younger than the age of 22;
  • Has not earned a high school diploma or an equivalent degree;
  • Has moved on his/her own as a migratory worker or with/to join/to precede a parent, spouse or guardian who is a migratory worker; and
  • The move was​:
    • within the preceding 36 months
    • due to economic necessity
    • from one school district to another (special conditions apply to Alaska and Hawaii); and
    • from one residence to another

A migratory worker is someone who has moved within the past 36 months and engaged in qualifying seasonal or temporary work in agriculture or fishing soon after the move or, under certain circumstances, unsuccessfully sought qualifying work.


 Priority for Services​

Under Title I, Part C of ESSA, eligible migrant children must receive priority for service if they have made a qualifying move within the previous 1-year period and are failing, or most at risk of failing, to meet the challenging State academic standards; or have dropped out of school.

 State Migrant Program Information

Program Links

 Migrant Recruiter Resources

Reference Material

Annual Recruiter Training

Migrant recruiter training is scheduled in the spring. For more information contact Reina Franco.

Questions About Recruiting

Contact Reina Franco, Illinois Migrant Identification and Recruitment Coordinator at 224-605-4743 or​

 Migrant Program Contact Information

Assistance Contacts
Program regulations, grants and technical assistance Trevor Cottle
Principal Consultant
Multilingual/Language Development Department
Illinois State Board of Education
100 North First Street, E-315
Springfield, IL 62777​
(217) 782-9123
Identification and recruitment, data, professional development and instructional resources Amy Jo Clemens, Ed.D.
Assistant Vice President, Outreach, Engagement, and Regional Development
Director, Center for P-20 Engagement​
Northern Illinois University
Division of Outreach, Engagement, and Regional Development
307 Lowden Hall
DeKalb, IL 60115
(815) 753-3942 ​​​

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