Updated: Feb 8, 2022
Last week we discussed the challenges and barriers to unaccompanied youth. This week we are going to look at how the provisions of McKinney-Vento can help students that are homeless and unaccompanied. In last week’s blog, we discussed how to identify a student that is unaccompanied. You can see that blog here. The National Center for Homeless Students (NCHS) has also produced a very useful flowchart for liaisons to consider when trying to identify a student as McKinney-Vento eligible. This is just one of many resources we will review in this week’s blog.
Helping students know they have options.
Unaccompanied youth are considered any child that is school age that qualifies as McKinney-Vento under the federal definition and does not have the supervision of an adult. As a reminder from last week’s blog- different states have different age requirements. Liaisons can find that information here. Do note that McKinney-Vento does not have program requirements specific to the age restrictions per state, but in many cases, students through the age of 21 can be provided with assistance. For New York State, please review the guidance here. Schools should also have flyers in different languages posted that let children know their rights. You can order many copies FOR FREE right here.
Do different students have different needs as unaccompanied youth?
The short answer? Yes. Students may be unaccompanied for a variety of reasons:
They ran away
One of both guardians disappear
The embedded links are great places to get started so you can provide the best support to your students under the provisions of McKinney-Vento. While many of these situations are emotional, stressful, and daunting when trying to arrange support for unaccompanied youth, regardless of the circumstance, NYS-TEACHS has you covered.
This month at NYSTEACHS:
Get to know our new website: https://www.nysteachs.org/
Our upcoming Webinar on Unaccompanied Youth will be held on January 20, 2022. You can register right here!
We will also be hosting a special webinar series: Becoming Trauma-Informed to Support Students Experiencing Homelessness. Part 1 is Understanding Trauma and will be held on February 17th. Part 2 will be held on March 3rd: Practices and Strategies for Safety and Support. Part 3 will be held on March 17th: Self-Care and Coping with Secondary Traumatic Stress.
Want to know more about our new website? You can take part in a brief webinar that will provide you a walkthrough of the site and the resources at your fingertips. Register for that HERE.
Next week on the blog: Providing Support to Unaccompanied Immigrant Youth