McKinney-Vento Act: Homeless Children and Youth
McKinney-Vento is the primary piece of federal legislation dealing with the education of children and youth experiencing homelessness in U.S. public schools.
To the extent that is practical and as required by law, the Mukilteo School District will work with homeless students, youth and their families to provide stability in school attendance and other services. Homeless students may be provided District Services for which they are eligible, including ECEAP, Title I, special education, bilingual education, vocational and technical education programs, gifted and talented programs and school nutrition programs.
Washington State Requirements and Guidance for Education of Homeless Children and Youth
The McKinney-Vento Education of Homeless Children and Youth Assistance Act is a federal law that ensures immediate enrollment and educational stability for homeless children and youth. McKinney-Vento provides federal funding to states for the purpose of supporting district programs that serve homeless students.
The McKinney-Vento Act defines homeless children as "individuals who lack a fixed, regular, and adequate nighttime residence." The act provides examples of children who would fall under this definition:
- Children and youth sharing housing due to loss of housing, economic hardship or a similar reason
- Children and youth living in motels, hotels, trailer parks, or camp grounds due to lack of alternative accommodations
- Children and youth living in emergency or transitional shelters
- Children and youth abandoned in hospitals
- Children and youth whose primary nighttime residence is not ordinarily used as a regular sleeping accommodation (e.g. park benches, etc)
- Children and youth living in cars, parks, public spaces, abandoned buildings, substandard housing, bus or train stations
- Migratory children and youth living in any of the above situations
Students in homeless situations may stay in their school of origin* or enroll in any public school that serves the area where they are currently living, according to their best interests. Unless otherwise prevented by a parent or guardians wishes, we will try to keep students in homeless situations in their school of origin. Students may then remain in that school the entire time they are homeless or until the end of any academic year in which they move into permanent housing.
*School of origin is defined as: the school attended when last permanently housed or the school in which the student was last enrolled.
Transportation to and from a student's school of origin is provided to students experiencing homelessness at a parent or guardian's request (or liaison's request for unaccompanied youth).
The McKinney-Vento Act provides grant funding to states and, in return, states are bound by the terms of the act. Washington receives approximately $950,000 in funding each year from the U.S. Department of Education to support the education of homeless students in school programs. OSPI, as the state educational agency, designates a statewide Education of Homeless Children and Youth Coordinator to review policies and create procedures, including dispute resolution procedures, to ensure that homeless children and youth are able to attend school.
Each school district has a homeless liaison who is in charge of helping to find and qualify students for the special services offered by the McKinney-Vento Act. He or she will ensure that students are able to enroll in a school, have full and equal opportunities to succeed, and ensure that these students are identified and offered services. Other duties include arranging transportation, posting notices, and resolving disputes that may arise. In the Mukilteo School District, the Director of Student Services and Athletics is the Homeless Liaison.
McKinney-Vento Homeless Liaison
Beth Vanderveen - Director of Student Services and Athletics
Tina Leger - Administrative Assistant