at Advocates for Children
151 West 30th Street
New York, NY 10001
NYS-TEACHS provides technical assistance to school districts, social service providers, shelters, families, youth and others about the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act [PDF]. Our services include:
- A Toll Free Helpline for questions about school-related issues (800-388-2014);
- On-site trainings, webinars, and annual McKinney-Vento Workshops on the education of students in temporary housing; and
- Free Posters and Brochures in multiple languages with information about the rights of students in temporary housing.
PLEASE NOTE: The information and resources included on this website are current through October 2016.
Important changes related to McKinney-Vento were included in the Every Student Succeeds Act of 2015 (ESSA). The changes take effect October 1, 2016, and include: expanded transportation protections, enhanced access to pre-school, privacy protections and stronger supports for unaccompanied youth who are homeless. For more information about the new changes, please refer to materials prepared by the National Association for the Education of Homeless Children and Youth (NAEHCY): ESSA - Legislation.
Please continue to check here for updated information about how new federal law will impact policies and procedures in New York State, and as always, feel free to contact NYS-TEACHS at 800-388-2014 with any questions you may have.
New and Noteworthy
This May 2016 Field Memo from the NY State Education Department addresses the rights of students in temporary housing to attend and recieve transportation to summer school. All students who experience homelessness and who are required to attend summer school to advance to the next grade or to graduate on time with their peers must be provided the opportunity to do so. This memo discusses access to summer school, summer school fees, transportation to summer school, and use of Title I set-aside funding for students in temporary housing.
All Head Start Programs must prioritize children who are homelessness for enrollment. They also must collect data on the number of children enrolled who are homeless. This Tip Sheet has information about how Head Start programs can identify children experiencing homelessness and connect them with Head Start Programs. The Housing Questionnaire should be used by Head Start staff as a part of the enrollment process to identify any child who is homeless. If you would like to share the Tip Sheet electronically, click here for the version with embedded hyperlinks. If you would like to print out the Tip Sheet with the links spelled out, click here.
This October 2015 Field Memo from the New York State Department of Education provides information about whether a student should be considered homeless under the McKinney-Vento Act in situations where a student has been removed from his/her home because of an allegation of abuse or neglect and the child welfare agency arranges for a relative or family friend to assume temporary custody of the student, rather than place the student in foster care.
In July 2015, NYSED Commissioner's Regulations governing enrollment of students in public school were amended to ensure that all students, and in particular unaccompanied youth, have timely access to school. The Regulations require that school districts accept a broader range of documents to establish residency and establish timelines for making residency determinations. The NYSED has produced brochures in multiple languages that districts can provide to parents so that they better understand the enrollment process. The brochure is currently available in: English, Spanish, Arabic, Bengali, Chinese, French, Haitian-Creole, Karen, Nepali, Russian, and Urdu.
This September 2015 Field Memo outlines the requirements for school districts to attend a McKinney-Vento training this school year as well as a mandatory spring meeting for current McKinney-Vento grantees.
This August 2015 NYSED Field Memo provides information about transportation to and from school for children placed in foster care.
U.S. Department of Education Letter to Title I State Coordinators and Homeless Education Coordinators
This letter from the Office of Safe and Healthy Students at the U.S. Department of Education to State Title I Coordinators and Homeless Education Coordinators includes information on the reauthorization of the Consolidated and Further Continuing Appropriations Act for fiscal year 2015 which extends the use of Title I funds to provide services to homeless children and youth. It also clarifies how Title I may be used to serve students experiencing homelessness and support the work of homeless liaisons.
Resources to Support Young Children and Families Experiencing Homelessness from Resource Connections is a compilation of publications exploring the prevalence, experience, and impact of homelessness among young children; access to for children experiencing homelessness; early care and education programs and practices that support children experiencing homelessness; and approaches for addressing trauma associated with homelessness for young children.
This June 2015 Field Memo from the NY State Education Department addresses the rights of students in temporary housing to attend and recieve transportation to summer school. All students who experience homelessness and who are required to attend summer school to advance to the next grade or to graduate on time with their peers must be provided the opportunity to do so. This memo discusses access to summer school, summer school fees, transportation to summer school, and use of Title I set-aside funding for students in temporary housing.
This June 2015 field memo from the NY State Education Department provides guidance on the rights of students in temporary housing to access public preschool education programs offered by a school district. It also provides guidance to school districts on outreach and identification of preschool age temporarily housed children, how to request funding and seek class-size variance requests for programs that may already be full, and other early childhood education programs and services that may be available.
NYSED Field Memo: Guidance Regarding Out-of-State/Country Children who become Homeless and Tuition Reimbursement
This March 2015 Field Memo from the NY State Education Department clarifies that schools districts cannot get additional state aid for instruction (also referred to as tuition reimbursement) through the STAC 202 process for students experiencing homelessness who were last permanently housed outside of New York State.
NYSED Field Memo: Required Local Educational Agency (LEA) Policy Relating to the McKinney- Vento Homeless Assistance Act
In November 2014, the New York State Education Department revised the Sample Local Educational Agency Education of Homeless Children Policy. This sample policy is intended to help school districts and charter schools ensure that their policies are fully in compliance with state and federal laws and address the problems that students in temporary housing face in enrolling, attending, and succeeding in school. School districts and charter schools are encouraged to incorporate, as appropriate, the provisions of the sample policy into existing policy manuals and post the policy to school district or charter school websites to ensure that the rights of students in temporary housing are widely known and fully protected.
This October 2014 Field Memo requires school districts to attend a McKinney-Vento training this school year.
The New York State Education Department issued this September 10, 2014 letter to all school districts regarding educational services for recently arrived unaccompanied immigrant children, many of whom may be eligible for services under the McKinney-Vento Act.
U.S. Dept. of Education Fact Sheet on Educational Services for Immigrant Children and Those Recently Arrived to the United States [PDF]
This fact sheet from the DOE provides information to help LEAs understand their responsibilities and existing resources available to educate all immigrant students.
Resources on the Education of Unaccompanied Immigrant Children
All children living in the United States are entitled to a free appropriate public education, regardless of their or their parents' actual or perceived national origin, citizenship, or immigration status. The National Association for the Education of Homeless Children and Youth (NAEHCY) has created and compiled a list of resources, which can be found here, to assist school district staff.
- Brief - Unaccompanied Immigrant Children Education & Homelessness [PDF]
This NAEHCY brief is designed to assist McKinney-Vento liaisons and other education staff in providing appropriate services to unaccompanied immigrant children.
- Flowchart - Unaccompanied Immigrant Children and McKinney-Vento[PDF]
This flowchart explains the overall process (from apprehension through placement) that unaccompanied immigrant children may experience upon arrival in the U.S..
Field Memo: Consolidated Appropriations Act and Expansion of Allowable Use of Title I Part A and Set-aside Funds for Students in Temporary Housing [PDF]
This June 30, 2014 Field Memo from the New York State Education Department describes how starting with the 2014-15 school year, school districts are permitted to use Title I funds to cover the cost of the salary for the McKinney-Vento liaison even if that person has no Title I duties and the cost of transporting students in temporary housing to and from their school of origin.
This June 2014 memo (USDA Memo SP 51-2014)clarifies that LEAs may consider the effective date of eligibility for free school meal or milk benefits for students in temporary housing to be the date on which documentation of eligibility is received. It also clarifies that LEAs may refund any money paid by the student or forgive any debt for meals or milk from the free meal eligibility effective date through the date the direct certification is actually implemented at the school.
Upcoming Workshops and Trainings
Fall 2016. More information coming soon.