The McKinney-Vento Homeless Education Assistance Act definition of "homeless":
Children and youth who lack a fixed, regular, and adequate nighttime residence, and includes children and youth who have a nighttime residence that is any of the following:
- In "doubled-up" situations, living in the home of another person,relatives or friends, due to loss of housing, economic hardship, or similar reason;
- Living in motels, hotels, RV parks, or campgrounds due to the lack of alternative adequate accommodations;
- Living in emergency, temporary or transitional shelters;
- Abandoned in hospitals;
- Awaiting foster care placement;
- Have a primary nighttime residence that is not ordinarily used as regular sleeping accommodations for human beings, such as living in cars, parks, public spaces, abandoned buildings, substandard housing, bus or train stations, or similar settings;
- Youth not residing with legal parent or guardian; and
This also includes youth from 18 through 21 years of age who may still be eligible for educational services in regular or special education.
The Federal McKinney-Vento Homeless Education Assistance Act requires:
- School Districts ensure and provide educational stability for students in temporary and transitional housing situations.
- School Districts ensure and provide immediate access to school for students in temporary and transitional housing situations.
- School Districts appoint a liaison for students in temporary and transitional housing situations.
- School Districts ensure that students in temporary and transitional housing situations have access to Title I services.
Educational Rights of Students in Temporary or Transitional Housing Situations:
- The right the stay in their school (school of origin), even if they move out of the school district. Students can remain in their school until the end of the school year even if they find permanent housing.
- The right to immediately enroll, attend classes, and fully participate in neighborhood school in the area where they are living, without proof of residency, immunization records, or other medical records, school records, or other documents.
- The right to get transportation to their school of origin provided or arranged by the school district, or a joint effort between school districts.
- The right to attend school district pre-school programs.
- The right to access to all school services including free school meals, services for English language learners, special education, Title I services, vocational/technical education, gifted and talented services, and before and after-school care, as needed.
- The right to have disagreements over enrollment with the school settled quickly, and attend the school the student selects while the disagreement is being settled.
- The right to the same opportunity to meet the same high academic standards as all students.