Hope is not pretending that troubles do not exist.
It is the hope that they will not last forever.
-the optimism revolution
• McKinney-Vento Act (Title X, Part C of the No Child Left Behind Act)
• The McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act (42 U.S.C. § 11431 et seq.) is a federal law that addresses the needs of homeless people (displaced families), including the educational needs of children and youth.
• Federal definition of who is homeless (displaced)?
• Subtitle VII-B of the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act (as reauthorized by Title X, Part C of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, as amended)
• The term "homeless children and youth"—
1. Means individuals who lack a fixed, regular, and adequate nighttime residence..; and
2. Includes — children and youths who are sharing the housing of other persons due to loss of housing, economic hardship, or a similar reason; are living in motels, hotels, trailer parks, or camping grounds due to the lack of alternative adequate accommodations; are living in emergency or transitional shelters; are abandoned in hospitals; or are awaiting foster care placement.
3. Children and youths who have a primary nighttime residence that is a public or private place not designed for or ordinarily used as a regular sleeping accommodation for human beings..
4. Children and youths who are living in cars, parks, public spaces, abandoned buildings, substandard housing, bus or train stations, or similar settings; and
5. Migratory children who qualify as homeless for the purposes of this subtitle because the children are living in circumstances described in clauses (i) through (iii).
6. McKinney-Vento Act defines unaccompanied youth as youth who are "not in the physical custody of a parent or guardian" [42 U.S.C. § 11434a (6)].
Potential warning signs of homelessness (displacement)
• Homeless children and youth face many educational barriers due to the disruption and trauma of not having a fixed, regular, and adequate place to live. Most face
educational disruption due to changing schools as they move from one temporary location to another. Homeless children and youth also have higher incidences of illness, depression, and exposure to violence than their stably housed peers. Specific educational challenges faced by homeless students include
1. Not being identified for services;
2. Difficulty enrolling without records, or without a parent or guardian present for unaccompanied homeless youth;
3. Difficulty attending school regularly;
4. A lack of stable transportation;
5. Frequent school changes;
6. Falling behind in school;
7. Not accruing credits on time;
8. A lack of basic needs including food, clothing, and adequate housing;
9. Stress, depression, trauma; and
10. Embarrassment and stigma related to their housing conditions.
Many homeless youth are also unaccompanied, meaning they are not in the physical custody of a parent or guardian. Being both homeless and unaccompanied leaves youth fending for themselves in a world where they are vulnerable to a myriad of potentially life-threatening dangers and temptations.
For all these reasons, school can often be the one place of stability, safety, and support in the tumultuous lives of these students.
The McKinney-Vento Act addresses educational challenges created by homelessness and guarantees homeless students the right to enroll, attend, and succeed in school. The law places the responsibility for guaranteeing the rights of homeless students on states and school districts.
• McKinney-Vento eligible students have the right to:
1. Enroll in school immediately, even if lacking documents normally required for enrollment.
2. Enroll in school and attend classes while the school gathers needed documents
3. Enroll in the local attendance area school or continue attending their school of origin (the school they attend when permanently housed or the school in which they were last enrolled), if that is the parent’s, guardian’s or unaccompanied youth’s preference and is feasible.1
1 If the school district believes the school selected is not in the student’s best interest, then the district must provide the parent, guardian, or unaccompanied youth with a written explanation of its position and inform him/her of the right to appeal its decision.
4. Receive transportation to and from the school of origin, if requested by the parent, guardian, or unaccompanied youth.
5. Receive educational services comparable to those provided to other students, according to the student’s need; and not be stigmatized or segregated on the basis of homeless status.
Important Medford School Board Policies
• J.ECBD Homeless Students
• J.ECBD-AR Homeless Students
Our District’s Tools and Resources
• Nighttime Residency Form and Educational Right Posters
1. In compliance with the McKinney-Vento Act, U.S.C. 42 § 11431 et seq., A non-intrusive questionnaire in English and Spanish (Nighttime Residency Form) is given to every family desiring to enroll a student into a Medford school located on the MSD 549C intranet under Forms and Documents.
2. If parent/student fill out Nighttime Residency Form, it can be a tool to assist local educational agency staff to possibly determine eligibility under McKinney-Vento Act, U.S.C. 42 § 11431.
3. Educational Right Posters are posted at all our schools in English and Spanish. It is a legal responsibility to disclose the rights for students and parents that may be displaced to have the knowledge of their equal access to a free and appropriate public education (FAPE).
• Contracted services through Maslow Project
1. Case Management and Family Advocating services for unaccompanied youth ages 0 to 22nd birthday and school aged youth who are displaced or about to be displaced.
2. Laundry services
3. Clothing closet
4. Food boxes
5. Hygiene supplies
6. RVTD bus passes, Taxi’s, and First Student Transportation assistance
7. Employment assistance
8. Centralized resource information for basic needs with computers
9. Maslow Project Resource Center is open M-F 10-5
Give credit where credit is due
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