What is the McKinney-Vento Act
The McKinney-Vento Act guarantees homeless children and youth an education equal to what they would receive if they were not homeless.
Who is Homeless?
According to the McKinney-Vento Act, homeless children and youth include individuals who lack a fixed, regular and adequate nighttime residence. This includes the following situations:
- Sharing the housing of others due to loss of housing or economic hardship
- Living in motels, hotels, trailer parks or camping grounds
- Living in emergency or transitional shelters
- Abandoned in hospitals
- Living in a nighttime residence that is a public or private place not designed for or ordinarily used as a regular sleeping accommodation
- Living in cars, parks, abandoned buildings, substandard housing, bus or train stations, or similar settings
The McKinney-Vento Act also recognizes unaccompanied youth who are homeless. According to the act, an unaccompanied youth is a youth not in the physical custody of a parent or legal guardian.
Which School Can a Homeless Child Attend?
There are two choices for a student in a homeless situation — the school of origin and the school of residency. The school of origin is the school the child attended when permanently housed or the school in which the child was last enrolled. The school of residency is the school serving the area where the child or youth is currently physically dwelling. When determining the school of best interest, a homeless child or youth should remain in the school of origin (to the extent feasible) unless doing so is contrary to the wishes of the parent or guardian or to the wishes of the unaccompanied youth.
What is a Homeless Liaison
A school district’s homeless liaison plays a vital role in ensuring that children and youth experiencing homelessness enroll and succeed in school. The McKinney-Vento Act requires that every school district appoint a homeless liaison who serves as the link between homeless families and school staff, district personnel, shelter workers, and social-service providers.
In accordance with state and federal law and the Missouri state plan for education of the homeless, Ferguson-Florissant School District will follow the requirements of the McKinney -Vento Act. The law ensures that children and youth experiencing homelessness can enroll in, attend, and succeed in school, which includes our Early Education programs. Our school district will ensure that children and students in transition are free from discrimination, segregation and harassment.
Who Do I Contact?
FFSD Student’s In Transition Program
Homeless and Foster Care Liaison
Department of Elementary and Secondary Education
Homeless State Coordinator