The McKinney-Vento Act’s Education of Homeless Children and Youth Program, ensures that homeless children and youth are provided a free, appropriate public education, despite lack of a fixed place of residence or a supervising parent or guardian. The state public school admission statute assuring the right of homeless and other children and youth in similar circumstances to enroll in schools is ORS 339.115(7).
Every school district in Oregon has at least one designated Homeless Student Liaison to provide direct assistance to homeless families and unaccompanied youths to access and achieve in school. To reach our district liaison, contact Lynn Rupp firstname.lastname@example.org.
Oregon’s Student Success Act has a Student Investment Account designed to support districts to reduce academic disparities and increase achievement of students in homeless living situations, those who are navigating poverty, and other historically underserved student groups. District Liaisons and ESDs are essential partners in this work.
In an effort to strengthen education support for students who find themselves and their families in temporary homeless circumstances, the U.S. Federal Government passed the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act (42 U.S.C. 11431), which was reauthorized December 10, 2015 by Title IX, Part A of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) and was effective October 1, 2016.
The McKinney-Vento Act defines “homeless children and youths” as individuals who lack a fixed, regular, and adequate nighttime residence. The term includes children and youths who are:
– sharing the housing of other persons due to loss of housing, economic hardship, or a similar reason, (sometimes referred to as “doubled up”);
– living in motels, hotels, trailer parks, or camping grounds due to lack of alternative adequate accommodations;
– living in emergency or transitional shelters; or
– abandoned in hospitals;
-Children and youths who have a primary nighttime residence that is a public or private place not designed for, or ordinarily used as, a regular sleeping accommodation for human beings;
-Children and youths who are living in cars, parks, public spaces, abandoned buildings, substandard housing, bus or train stations, or similar settings; and
-Migratory children who qualify as homeless because they are living in circumstances described above.
Students in homeless situations have the right to:
- Get help enrolling and succeeding in school from the district’s liaison for the Education of Homeless Children and Youth or from a designated building contact.
- Stay in the school they went to before becoming homeless or whatever school they were enrolled in last (called “school or origin), even if they move out of the district, or they can choose to go to the local school in the area where they are living.
- Get transportation to their school of origin provided or arranged by the school district, or a joint effort among school districts.
- Get preschool services, apply for free school meals, and access to all educational services they are entitled to per state and federal regulations.
If you currently find yourself in any of the situations described above, you or your children are entitled to assistance so that their schooling can continue during this challenging time. Please contact your school office or Lynn Rupp, email@example.com for support.
What is the school of origin?
The school of origin is the school that a child or youth attended when permanently housed, or the school in which the child or youth was last enrolled, including a preschool.
For example, a student was last enrolled in School A in grade 5, which is the final grade level served by School A. Students at School A are designated to attend School B beginning in the next grade level, grade 6. The school of origin for this student would therefore include School A and the designated receiving school at the next grade level, School B.
Jackson County Homeless Shelter and Social Services:
– List of available shelters and social services in Jackson County
Child Care Resource Network: (541) 842-2575 or (800) 866-9034
– Connecting families with child care providers in Washington & Columbia Counties
Early Head Start & Head Start: (541)734-2279
– Comprehensive programs serving children from infancy to age five
ACCESS Energy Assistance: 541-779-6691
– Helping families stay warm and safe
Emergency Rent Assistance: 541-779-6691
– Keeping families in their homes
Maslow Project: 541-779-HELP
– Maslow Project is a nonprofit grassroots organization based in Medford, Oregon providing street outreach and basic needs, crisis intervention and advocacy, and essential support services to homeless children and youth–ages 0-21–and their families throughout Jackson County.
**Homeless Community-Resource-Guide with additional community resources available in the Medford area
Hearts with a Mission: 541-646-7385
– Hearts With A Mission serves homeless and at-risk youth by providing shelter, educational support, mentoring and transition planning with a faith-based approach.
– Helping families reduce energy costs through conservation services
Rogue Valley Commuter Line: 541-474-5452, ext 2
-There is now service between Grants Pass and Medford (with stops in Rogue River and Gold Hill upon request). The service will be available Monday through Friday only.