Legislation, Regulations, and Guidance


  • The Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 ,Title I, Part C, as amended by the Every Student Succeeds Act of 2015– The The Every Student Succeeds Act, which was signed into law on December 10, 2015, contains the major statutory provisions that apply to the Migrant Education Program. The new law supersedes the previous law.
  • Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA)FERPA is a Federal law that protects the privacy of student education records (20 U.S.C. § 1232g; 34 CFR Part 99). The law applies to all schools that receive funds under an applicable program of the U.S. Department of Education.
  • Department of Education’s General Education Provisions Act (GEPA), Section 427Section 427 requires each applicant for funds (other than an individual person) to include in its application a description of the steps the applicant proposes to take to ensure equitable access to, and participation in, its federally assisted program for students, teachers, and other program beneficiaries with special needs.


  • Code of Federal Regulations (Part 200) – As required by the statute, the U.S. Department of Education issues a set of regulations implementing the programs under Title I of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965, as amended. To provide maximum flexibility to grantees implementing the programs under Title I, the regulations in Section 200.81 address only those provisions for which rulemaking is absolutely necessary. The current regulations that apply to the Title I Migrant Education Program begin in Section 200.81.Please note that a number of the sections of the Title I, Part A regulations affect migrant children as members of the overall student population (e.g., adequate yearly progress, public school choice, supplemental services, parental involvement, etc.), however, the particular needs of migrant children are addressed in the schoolwide program regulations [Sections 200.26(i)200.29(c)(1)].
  • Code of Federal Regulations (Part 299)– General Provisions.
  • Federal Register Notice on Funding Formula – In the Federal Register Notice dated April 2, 2004, the Department announced that the interpretation of the statutory formula for awarding FY 2003 MEP funds to all States, including DC and Puerto Rico (previously published on June 11, 2003) will continue to apply:
    • to the allocation of MEP funds in FY 2004, and
    • to succeeding fiscal years in which the amount of funds appropriated for the MEP does not exceed the amount appropriated in FY 2002.
  • Federal Register Notice to clarify and improve MEP eligibility and fiscal accountability requirements – In the Federal Register Notice dated July 29, 2008, the Department announced new regulations that provide:
    • clear definitions of several terms used in the statutory definition of a migratory child that were previously defined only in non-regulatory guidance and thus open to inconsistent application across the States;
    • specific quality control procedures including periodic re-interviewing and the use of a standard, national certificate of eligibility to be used by all States to document the basis of their determinations of the eligibility of a migratory child; and
    • authority for ED to adjust SEAs’ FY 2006 and subsequent year MEP grant awards to reflect corrections based on State-reported estimates of the percentage of ineligible children included in the SEAs’ prior year statewide counts of migratory children.
  • National certificate of eligibility (COE) form and instructions to be used by all States to document the basis of their determinations of the eligibility of a migratory child. – On June 16, 2020, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) extended its approval of the information collection requirements associated with the National COE, for use through June 30, 2023. States have been given certain flexibility in meeting the requirements of the national COE and therefore should read the instructions carefully as they implement the requirements. The national COE is comprised of three parts:
    1. Required Data Elements, which States can organize according to State preference and need. Required Data Elements must be worded as they appear in the instructions, and cannot be changed or shortened, with specific exceptions noted;
    2. Required Data Sections, which States can place according to State preference and need, but that must be maintained in whole and unaltered, with specific exceptions noted; and
    3. State Required/Requested information, where space is available, that States can use to collect other data. State-specific required/requested information may be placed anywhere on the COE, except inside any of the Required Data sections. States may choose their own header (e.g., State name) on the COE, as long as it identifies the form as the Certificate of Eligibility. States may also include their State logos or seals.

Note: States must maintain any additional documentation the SEA requires to confirm that each child found eligible for the program meets all of the eligibility definitions. State responsibilities for documenting the eligibility of migratory children are found in 34 C.F.R. § 200.89(c).

If you have any questions about the national COE requirements, please contact your MEP program officer.

  • Regulations on Standards and Assessments– The final regulations on standards and assessments require that assessment results be disaggregated within each State, LEA, and school by migrant status per 34 CFR 200.2(b)(10). They also require that a state include migratory students and other mobile students in its academic assessment system, even if those students are not included for accountability purposes per 34 CFR 200.6(c).

Policy Guidance

  • Non-Regulatory Guidance for Title I, Part C, Education of Migratory Children (March 2017) -This document is designed to help SEAs and LOAs use MEP funds to develop and implement supplemental educational and support services to assist migratory children. View all of the Department of Education’s major policy guidance on the policy guidance page.
  • MEP Non-Regulatory Guidance MS WORD (32 KB)
Last Modified: 11/02/2021