Homelessness Resources

Homeless Families: McKinney-Vento Act Information

The McKinney-Vento Act defines homeless children and youth as individuals who lack a fixed, regular, and adequate nighttime residence. This definition also includes

-        Children and youth who are sharing the housing of other persons due to loss of housing, economic hardship, or similar reason

-        Children and youth who may be living in motels, hotels, or shelters

-        Children and youth who have a primary nighttime residence that is a public or private place not designed for or ordinarily used as a regular sleeping accommodation for human beings

-        Children and youth who are living in cars, parks, public spaces, abandoned buildings, substandard housing, bus or train stations, or similar settings

-        Migratory children who qualify as homeless because they are  children who are  living in similar circumstances listed above


Information for Parents

If your family lives in any of the following situations, your school-age children may qualify for certain rights and protections under the federal  McKinney-Vento Act.

-        In a shelter

-        In a motel or campground due to the lack of an alternative adequate accommodation

-        In a car, park, abandoned building, or bus or train station

-        Doubled up with other people due to loss of housing or economic hardship


Information for Students

If you are a child or youth not in the physical custody of a parent or guardian and lack a fixed, regular, and adequate nighttime residence, you may also qualify for certain rights and protections.


Eligible children have the right to:

-        Receive a  free, appropriate public education

-        Enroll in a school immediately, even if lacking documents normally required for enrollment

-        Enroll in a school and attend classes while the school gathers needed documents

-        Enroll in the local school or continue attending their school of origin (the school they attended when permanently housed or the school in which they were last enrolled) if that is your preference and it  is feasible

o   If the school district believes that the school you select is not in the best interest of your children, then the district must provide you with a written explanation of its position and inform you of your right to appeal its decision.

-        Receive transportation to and from the school of origin, if you  request this

-        Receive educational services comparable to those provided to other students, according to your child’s needs.


Homeless Liaison

Kristina Mannino

Supervisor of Student Services


(609) 632-0944 x4430


National Center for Homeless Education

New Jersey Homeless Resources

New Jersey Human Services - Homelessness

Mercer County Office on Homeless Services

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