McKinney-Vento Homeless Education Assistance Act

  • The McKinney-Vento Homeless Education Assistance Act is a federal law that provides certain rights and protections to students who are experiencing homelessness. Under this law, homelessness is defined as lacking a fixed, regular and adequate nighttime residence including:

    • Temporarily sharing the housing of other persons due to loss of housing, economic hardship or a similar reason (sometimes called doubled up)
    • Living in motels, hotels, or camping grounds due to the lack of alternative adequate accommodations.
    • Living in emergency, transitional, or domestic violence shelters.
    • Living in cars, parks, public spaces, abandoned buildings, bus or train stations or similar settings.

    Unaccompanied youth who are living on their own without a parent or guardian, “couch surfing” or in similar situations may also meet the definition of homeless under the McKinney-Vento Act.

    Students who are eligible for services under the McKinney-Vento Act have a right to

    • School enrollment even without proper enrollment documentation.
    • Attend the school of residency or the school of origin. The school of origin is where the student was last enrolled or where they attended school when permanently housed.
    • Remain enrolled in the child’s school for the duration of homelessness and through the academic year if they become permanently housed, if doing so is in the best interests of the child.
    • Access to the same programs and services available to all students.
    • Transportation to and/or from school.

    Oregon School District Policy 323 addresses homeless children.

    If you are in temporary or inadequate housing, or would like more information about the McKinney-Vento Act, please contact Caitlin Petersen or Amie Mitchell at 835-4471.