McKinney-Vento - Homeless Children & Youth

McKinney-Vento - Homeless Children & Youth Resources

The McKinney-Vento Education of Homeless Children and Youth Assistance Act is a federal law that ensures immediate enrollment and educational stability for homeless children and youth. McKinney-Vento provides federal funding to states for the purpose of supporting district programs that serve homeless students.

Defining Homeless

The McKinney-Vento Act defines homeless children as "individuals who lack a fixed, regular, and adequate nighttime residence." The act provides examples of children who would fall under this definition:
  • Children and youth living in motels, hotels, trailer parks, or camp grounds due to lack of alternative accommodations
  • Children and youth sharing housing due to loss of housing, economic hardship or a similar reason
  • Children and youth living in emergency or transitional shelters
  • Children and youth abandoned in hospitals
  • Children and youth whose primary nighttime residence is not ordinarily used as a regular sleeping accommodation (e.g. park benches, etc)
  • Children and youth living in cars, parks, public spaces, abandoned buildings, substandard housing, bus or train stations
  • Migratory children and youth living in any of the above situations



Children in Homeless Situations Have the Right To:


  • Go to school, no matter where they live or how long they have lived there.
  • Attend either the local school or the school of origin, if this is in their best interest; the school of origin is the school the child attended when he/she was permanently housed or the school in which the child was last enrolled.
  • Receive transportation to and from the school of origin.
  • Enroll in school immediately, even if missing records and documents normally required for enrollment, such as a birth certificate, proof of residence, previous school records, or immunization/medical records.
  • Enroll, attend classes, and participate fully in all school activities while the school gathers records.
  • Have access to the same programs and services that are available to all other students, including transportation and supplemental educational services.
  • Attend school with children not experiencing homelessness; a school can not segregate a student because he or she is homeless.

For more information about Elma's homeless services, contact your school counselor or the District McKinney-Vento Liaison, Wendy Beldin at (360) 482-3121 or email at wbeldin@eagles.edu


Additional Resources:

OSPI McKinney-Vento


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