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Students in Transition

The McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act is a federal law supporting the educational rights of students who are living in emergency, temporary and/or transitional housing situations maintain academic stability and success.  The federal McKinney-Vento Act requires school districts to:
  • Ensure educational stability for students in emergency, temporary and/or transitional housing situations.
  • Ensure immediate access to school for students in emergency emergency, temporary and/or transitional housing situations.
  • Appoint a liaison for students who are eligible for McKinney-Vento services.
  • Make sure that students in emergency, temporary and/or transitional housing situations have access to Title 1 services.

If your family lives in any of the following situations:

  • In a shelter
  • In a motel or campground due to the lack of an alternative adequate accomodation
  • In a car, park, abandoned building, or a bus or train station
  • Doubled up with other people due to loss of housing or economic hardship
Your school-age children may qualify for certain rights and protections under the federal McKinney-Vento Act.

Your eligible children have the right to:

  • Receive a free, appropriate public education.
  • Enroll in school immediately, even if lacking documents normally required for enrollment.
  • Enroll in school and attend classes while the school gathers needed documents.
  • Enroll in the school; or continue attending their school of origin (the school they attended when permanently housed or the school in which they were last enrolled), if that is your preference.
    • If the school district believes that the school you select is not in the best interest of your children, then the district must provide you with a written explanation of its position and inform you of your right to appeal its decision.
  • Receive transportation to and from the school of origin, if you request this.
  • Receive educational services comparable to those provided to other students, according to your children's needs.
If you believe your children may be eligible, contact the local liaison to find out what services and supports may be available. There also may be supports available for your preschool-age children.

Local Liaison:  Margaret Lowry (509) 257-2511

The following procedures are specified in McKinney-Vento and further explained in Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction Dispute Resolution Process.

Helpful Links

Hidden in Plain Sight:  http://www.americaspromise.org/report/hidden-plain-sight

National Center on Homeless Education: https://nche.ed.gov

National Network for Youth: http://www.nn4youth.org

 DVDs for awareness-raising: vimeo.com/pjulianelle
◦“The McKinney-Vento Act in Our Schools”
◦“Education and Homelessness: Young Children to Young Adults”