A homeless individual is someone who lacks a fixed, regular, and adequate nighttime residence. This includes anyone who, due to lack of houseing, lives:
- in emergency or transitional shelters,
- in motels, hotels, trailer parks, campgrounds, abandoned in hospitals, awaiting foster care,
- in cars, parks, public places, bus or train stations, abandoned buildings,
- doubled up with relatives or friends,
- migratory children living in these conditions.
What Homeless Families Need to Know
- Homeless children have a right to attend school.
- You do not need a permanent address to enroll your child in school.
- Homeless children have the right to stay in their home school if the parents choose.
- Your child cannot be denied school enrollment just because school records or other enrollment documentation are not immediately available.
- Your child has the right to transportation services to and from the school of origin.
- Your child has the right to participate in extra-curricular activities and all federal, state, and local programs for which s/he is eligible.
What Your Family Can Do Before You Move
- Tell your child's teacher and principal that your child is moving, and give them the new address
- Let school officials know if you want your child to stay in his/her home school while you are getting the family stabilized.
- Ask for a copy of your child's school records, including immunizations.
Tips for Families Who Move Often
- Keep a copy of birth certificates and school records accessible.
- Safeguard all health and immunization records.
- Have a reliable person keep a second copy of the child's birth certificate, school records, and health information.
- Enroll children in school as soon as possible.
At School, Ask About These Special Services
- Free breakfast and lunch programs
- Free transportation servcies
- Special transportation for children to remain in their home school
- Special education programs, especially if the student has previously received special education services
- Tutoring programs
- Programs to help children learn English
- Gifted or talented programs
- Summer school programs
- Pre-school programs
- Homeless assistance programs