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Child Welfare & Attendance » Homeless Children

Homeless Children

No Child Left Behind Act of 2001
McKinney-Vento Act

McKinney-Vento program is designed to address the problems that homeless children and youth have faced in enrolling, attending, and succeeding in school. Under this program, the Garvey School District want's to ensure that each homeless child and youth has equal access to the same free, appropriate public education, including a public preschool education, as other children and youths.

Definition of Homeless

The McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act, 2001 reauthorization includes definitions of who is considered homeless and therefore who is eligible for the rights and protections it provides. These definitions include:
  1. Children and youth who lack a fixed, regular, and adequate nighttime residence, and includes children and youth who are sharing the housing of other persons due to loss of housing, economic hardship, or similar reason; are living in motels, hotels, trailer parks, or camping grounds due to lack of alternative adequate accommodations; are living in emergency or transitional shelters; are abandoned in hospitals; or are awaiting foster care placement.
  2. Children and youth who have a primary nighttime residence that is a private or public place not designed for or ordinarily used as a regular sleeping accommodation for human beings
  3. Children and youth who are living in cars, parks, public spaces, abandoned buildings, substandard housing, bus or train stations, or similar settings
  4. Migratory children who qualify as homeless because they are living in circumstances described above.
What are the primary causes of homelessness
  • Lack of affordable housing
  • Low incomes
Contributing Factors
  • Health Problems
  • Domestic Violence
  • Unaccompanied Youth

  • Enrolling school must obtain school records from the previous school, and student must be enrolled in school while records are obtained.
  • Schools must maintain records for students who are homeless so they are available quickly.
  • If a student does not have immunizations, or immunization or medical records, the liaison must immediately assist in obtaining them, and the student must be enrolled in school in the interim.

Access to Services
  • Undocumented children and youth have the same right to attend public primary and secondary schools as U.S. citizens and are covered by the McKinney-Vento Act to the same extent as other children and youth.
  • Students in homeless situations must have access to educational services for which they are eligible, including special education, programs for English language learners, gifted and talented programs, vocational/technical education, and school nutrition programs.
  • USDA policy permits liaisons and shelter directors to obtain free school meals for students by providing a list of names of students experiencing homelessness with effective dates.

Garvey School District, Pupil Services Department will review and undertake steps to revise laws, regulations, practices, or policies that may act as a barrier to the enrollment, attendance, or success in school of homeless children and youth.

Statutory authority for the McKinney-Vento program was authorized under Title VII-B of the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act (42 USC 11431 et seq.) The program was originally authorized in 1987, and most recently reauthorized by the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001.

For additional information or questions you can call Garvey School District, Pupil Services Department at (626) 307-3427 and ask for Bulmaro A. Magallón or Cindy Phan-Hy.