Debby card

Services to the Homeless Population Children who are determined homeless are provided with certain rights in schools that ensure an equal opportunity for education. The term “homeless children and youth” means individuals who lack a fixed regular and adequate nighttime residence (A); and (B) includes—(i) 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 accommodations; are living in emergency or transitional shelters; are abandoned in hospitals; or are awaiting foster care placement; (ii) 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; (iii) children and youths who are living in cars, parks, public spaces, abandoned buildings, substandard housing, bus or train stations, or similar settings; and (iv) 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). The McKinney Vento Homeless Assistance Act (Subtitle B—Education for Homeless Children and Youth), reauthorized in 2015, ensures educational rights and protections for children and youth experiencing homelessness. McKinney-Vento Regulations All students are required to fill out a McKinney-Vento form upon enrollment. If your living arrangement is both temporary and the result of economic hardship, you may qualify for services under the McKinney-Vento Act. The purpose of this law is to provide academic stability for students of families in transition. You may want to talk with our Homeless Education Liaisons if your family’s temporary living arrangement is one of the following:

  • You are living with friends or relatives, or moving from place to place because you cannot currently afford your own housing.

  • You are living in a shelter or a motel.

  • You are living in housing without water or electricity.

  • You are living in a place not considered traditional housing, such as a car or a campground. A student may also qualify as an “unaccompanied youth” if he or she is living with someone who is not a parent or guardian, or if he or she is moving from place to place without parent or guardian. Children who qualify under McKinney-Vento have the right to

  • Attend the school they were attending when their family was forced to move to a temporary address because of economic hardship, even if that school is in another school district. The choice must be a reasonable one that is in the best interest of the children involved.

  • Contact the Homeless Education Liaison if you are not sure.

  • Stay in this school for the duration of the school year if their families are forced to move to another temporary address because of economic hardship.

  • Receive assistance with transportation to attend school while they are in temporary housing

  • Start school immediately while people at the school help families obtain school and immunization records or other documents necessary for enrollment.

  • Enroll in school without having a permanent address

  • Participate in the same programs and services that other students participate in.

  • Receive any applicable Title I services.

Updated for 2022-2023 School Year

Educating Missouri's Homeless Children