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Homeless Student Support Services McKinney-Vento

Homeless Student

FEDERAL LAW - MCKINNEY VENTO HOMELESS ASSISTANCE ACT

This federal legislation was originally authorized in 1987 and most recently re-authorized in December 2015 by the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). This legislation ensures children and youth experiencing homelessness have immediate and equal access to public education.

 STATE LAW – TEXAS EDUCATION CODE

All Texas public schools, charter schools, and education services centers, collectively known as local education agencies (LEAs), must follow federal rules concerning the education of homeless students. Texas Education Code (TEC) §§ 25.001, 25.002, and 29.153 address educational rights for homeless students. 

McKinney-Vento Family Resources

The McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act establishes the educational rights to which children and youth experiencing homelessness are entitled. New Summerfield I.S.D. is committed to ensuring that homeless children and youth have access to a quality education in our public schools.

DeAnna Molloy (District Counselor) is NSISD's McKinney-Vento liaison, and she can be reached dmolloy@newsummerfieldisd.net

Who Is Homeless?

Per the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act (42 USC 11302), youth are considered home is they "lack a fixed, regular, and adequate nighttime residence," including:

  • In emergency or transitional shelters
  • In motels, hotels, campgrounds, abandoned in hospitals, or awaiting foster care
  • In cars, parks, public places, bus or train stations, or abandoned buildings
  • Doubled up with relatives or friends
  • Unaccompanied youth, youth who had to leave their residence for self protection living under these conditions

Youth may also experience episodic-homleessness which may manifest in more unconventional ways like couch-surfing.

What Are Your Rights?

  • Homeless children have a right to attend school.
  • You do not need a permanent address to enroll your child in school.
  • Homeless children have the right to stay in their home school if the parents choose.
  • Your child cannot be denied school enrollment just because school records or other enrollment documentation are not immediately available.
  • Your child has the opportunity to receive transportation services to and from the school of origin.
  • Your child has the right to participate in extracurricular activities and all federal, state, or local programs for which he/she is eligible.

McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act Overview:

Provided by TEA: Children and Youth Experiencing Homelessness 

Under federal and state law, children and youth experiencing homelessness have a right to a free, appropriate public education (FAPE). The McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act (federal law) provides assistance to states to help them ensure educational rights and protections for children and youth experiencing homelessness. This program helps State Educational Agencies (SEAs) ensure that homeless children, including preschoolers and youths, have equal access to FAPE, including a public preschool education, as provided to other children and youth.  

Consistent with the McKinney-Vento Act, children experiencing homelessness are to be provided services comparable to those received by other students in the school they attend, including transportation services, and education programs for which such students are otherwise eligible, such as services provided under McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act, as amended by the Every Student Succeeds Act of 2015 or similar state or local programs and programs for students with disabilities. 

State law also addresses the educational rights of children and youth experiencing homelessness. Texas Education Code (TEC) §§ 25.001, 25.002, and 29.153 address educational rights concerning school admission and preschool for homeless students. 

General Information:

McKinney-Vento Protection

What to do If you qualify for McKinney-Vento protection:

If you qualify for protection under the McKinney-Vento Act, you have access to certain rights and protections. There are several steps you can take to ensure that you are accessing all of the benefits your community may offer.

Know Your Rights:

The McKinney-Vento Act grants legal protections so that children and youth (ages 5-21 years) may enroll in, attend, and have the opportunities to succeed in school. Read the following fact sheets provided by NCHE to learn more about your rights and techniques for dealing with your children in a crisis situation.

NCHE Determining Eligibility

Meet Your Liaison:

By law, every school district and charter school must designate a homeless liaison that can educate and advocate for homeless students. Liaisons’ duties include helping students without homes enroll in school or pre-school, assisting to arrange transportation to school, and mediating disputes. New Summerfield I.S.D.'s Liaison: DeAnna Molloy, dmolloy@newsummerfieldisd.net or 903.726.3306x748

Liaison Resources:

  • Ensuring qualified students are also enrolled in other appropriate educational services such as Head Start or pre-school.
  • Referring students to appropriate health services.
  • Keeping parents and guardians informed as to their students’ options and rights.
  • Publicly posting notice of educational rights.
  • Mediating enrollment disputes.
  • Informing about and assisting with transportation arrangements.
  • Helping students obtain immunizations (where needed), and medical records.
  • Informing unaccompanied youth (students without parents or guardians) about enrollment options and assist them in enrolling.
  • Sample Student Residence Questionnaire (PDF)
  • Sample Intake Form (PDF)
  • Immunization Flow Chart (PDF)
  • Sample Transportation Letter (PDF)
  • Sample FAFSA Verification Form (PDF)
  • Dispute Resolution (PDF)

County Resources - contact local liaison for more resources

Greater East Texas Community Action Program

Energy and emergency assistance, plus weatherization for those who qualify

613 E. Rusk St. Suite C

Jacksonville, Texas 75766

903-589-5060 

Crisis Center of Cherokee and Anderson Counties
313 West Debard
Palestine, TX 75801
(903)723-5858
Confidential Hotline 1-800-232-8519

Resources for Homeless Students and Families (click on the following links):

2-1-1 Texas - A free service that can refer you to appropriate social service agencies and provide their contact information. It is supported by the state’s Health and Human Service Commission's Texas Information and Referral Network. This service can be accessed via its website (searchable by service type and location) or by phone (dial 2-1-1).

903HELP.ORG

A Judicial Guide: Identifying and Serving Youth Experiencing Homelessness

Andrews Center

Aunt Bertha

Early Childhood Texas

East Texas Food Bank

East Texas Human Needs Network

Greater East Texas Community Action Program

Liaison Resource Guide - A compilation of resources organized by topic.

National Association for the Education of Homeless Children and Youth

National Center for Homeless Education

Presbyterian Children's Homes and Services

Samaritan Counseling Center of East Texas, Inc.

School House Connection

Texas Child Care

Texas Homeless Network

Texas Network of Youth Services

Texas Shelters

Texas Workforce Commission

Texas Youth Helpline

The Salvation Army

TEA TEHCY Program Website  

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McKinney Vento Law (Print CopY)

TIPS FOR EDUCATORS AND SCHOOL STAFF

Contact:

DeAnna Molloy

New Summerfield I.S.D. District Counselor
Phone: (903) 726-3306 x 748
Fax: (903) 726-3429
dmolloy@newsummerfieldisd.net

Region VII Education Service Center Specialists & Resources