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McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance

Commonly Asked Questions 

What is the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act? 

It is a federal law that ensures homeless children and youth have access to immediate enrollment and educational stability. 

Your child falls under this definition if your family lives in any of the following situations: 

  • Sharing housing due to loss of housing, economic hardship or a similar reason 
  • Living in motels, hotels, trailer parks, or campgrounds 
  • Living in emergency or transitional shelters 
  • Living in cars, parks, public spaces, abandoned buildings, substandard housing, bus or train stations 

The term also applies to any child who: 

  • Is migratory and lives in any of the above situations 
  • Is abandoned in a hospital 
  • Whose nighttime residence is not ordinarily used as a sleeping accommodation (e.g. park benches, etc.) 

If your family meets the above definition, your child has the right to: 

  • Receive a free, appropriate public education 
    • Enroll in school immediately, even if lacking documents normally required for enrollment. 
    • Enroll in school and attend classes while the school gathers needed documents. 
    • Enroll in the local school; or continue attending their school of origin if that is your preference and is determined to be in your child’s best interest. 
    • Receive transportation to and from the school of origin, if you request this. 
    • Receive educational services comparable to those provided to other students, per your child’s needs. 

Please contact Sara Sims, Phoenix #1 Homeless Liaison, at (602) 523-8988, or the State Homeless Coordinator, Silvia Chavez, at (602) 542-4963.