THE MCKINNEY-VENTO ACT: HOMELESS CHILDREN AND YOUTH PROGRAM
Homeless students are those who lack a fixed, regular, adequate nighttime residence. This includes students who are sharing the housing of other persons due to a loss of housing, economic harship or similar reason; are living in motels, hotels, trailer parks or campgrounds due to lack of alternative adequate accomodations; are living in emergency or transitional shelters; are abandoned in hospitals. The definition includes migratory students who live in the aforementioned situations. Beginning December 10th, 2016, "those awaiting foster care placement" are not included in the definition.
The Arizona Homeless Education Program is dedicated to ensuring that all children and youth experiencing homelessness have access to the public education to which they are entitled under the federal McKinney-Vento Education of Homeless Children and Youth Assistance Act. ADE works towards this goal by ensuring that Arizona state policies are in compliance with federal law, by providing technical assistance to Arizona’s local homeless liaisons, and by providing informational and awareness materials to educators and other interested community members throughout Arizona.
Parent and Family Rights
The McKinney-Vento Act provides certain rights for students experiencing homelessness. They include waiving certain requirements such as proof of residency when students are enrolling and allowing catergorical eligibility for certain services, such as free textbooks. The Act also states:
● Homeless students may attend their school of origin or the school where they are temporarily residing;
● Homeless students must be provided a written statement of their rights when they enroll and at least two times per year;
● Homeless students may enroll without school, medical, or similar records;
● Homeless students have a right to transportation to school;
● Students must be provided a statement explaining why they are denied any service or enrollment;
● Students must receive services, such as transportation, while disputes are being settled;
● Students are automatically eligible for Title I services;
● School districts must reserve a portion of Title IA funds to serve homeless students;
● School districts must review and revise policies that provide barriers to homeless students;
● Schools must post information in the community regarding the rights of homeless students, in schools and other places that homeless families may frequent; and
● School districts must identify a McKinney Vento Liaison to assist students.
Need to Enroll a Student?
New to Arizona and need to find out what school district to enroll your student in? Recently moved to a new area and student returned to school of origin is not in their best interest? Please enter your new address/ zip code/ or main cross streets in the SEARCH boxHERE. You will see a map with all the schools in your area with contact information.
Every school district has a Homeless Liaison who can help you and your child. Please go to the Contact Informationpage to find your local McKinney-Vento liaison.
The mission of the Homeless Education Program is to ensure that homeless children and youth have access to a free, appropriate public education, comparable to that provided to the children of any Arizona resident and consistent with Arizona’s mandatory school attendance laws.
Subtitle B of Title VII of the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act (42 U.S.C. 11431 et seq.) is included in the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) of 2015. The reauthorization requires that children and youths experiencing homelessness are immediately enrolled in school and have educational opportunities equal to those of their non-homeless peers. The statute requires every public school district and charter holder to designate a Homeless Liaison to ensure that homeless students are identified and their needs are being met.
In order to supplement services to these children and youths, the U.S. Department of Education provides funding for state and local activities. These dollars are allocated to the local education agencies through a competitive grant process, based on need and program quality.