• McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act
    Under the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act, schools must ensure that homeless children and youths have equal access to the same free, appropriate public education, including a public preschool education, as is provided to other children and youths. Homeless students must also have access to the education and other services needed to meet the same challenging State academic standards to which all students are held.

    Homeless Children and Youths Defined
    Homeless children and youths refers to individuals who lack a fixed, regular, and adequate nighttime residence. The term includes:
    • Youths who are sharing housing 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;
    • Youths who are living in emergency or transitional shelters; or are abandoned in hospitals; have a primary nighttime residence that is a public or private place not designed to be a regular sleeping accommodation for human beings;
    • Youths living in cars, parks, public spaces, abandoned buildings, substandard housing, bus or train stations, or similar settings;
    • And migratory children, who qualify as homeless because of their living arrangements.

    Guarantees for Homeless Children and Youth
    • Ability to enroll in school, even if lacking paperwork normally required
    • The right to attend in the school of origin or in the school in the attendance area where currently residing
    • An “equal playing field” and the removal of barriers to receiving educational services (including free school meals, fee waivers for school fees, access to tutoring, and more)
    • Transportation to and from school (if transportation is a barrier to receiving an education)
    • The right to attend school along with children not experiencing homelessness
    • The posting of homeless students’ rights in all schools and other places around the community.

    McKinney-Vento Fact Sheet
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    Learn more by contacting Dr. Janine Gruhn, Assistant Superintendent for Student Services, at jgruhn@district31.net or call 847-313-4411.