Frequently Asked Questions

What is the definition of a “homeless youth” under McKinney-Vento?
“Homeless” is defined as “anyone lacking a fixed, adequate, regular nighttime residence.”

What situations fit this definition?

  • Staying in the home of other people due to unavailable housing, financial hardship, or similar circumstances
  • Living in motels, hotels, trailer parks (in some instances – examples: leaking roof, no heat, etc.), public places, or campgrounds due to unavailable suitable housing options
  • Living in an emergency shelter or transitional housing
  • Unaccompanied (not living in direct care of legal parent or guardian) or runaway youth
  • Refugee and migrant youth

How does McKinney-Vento help these students?
The law makes sure that these students receive a free and suitable public education by removing barriers to school enrollment and full, basic, daily participation in school activities. This includes:

  • Immediate enrollment
  • Free and Reduced School Lunch
  • Help from school with any necessary enrollment documents
  • Help from school setting up transportation service (if the student qualifies)
  • Help from school with obtaining basic school supplies
  • Help from school with obtaining basic clothing needs
  • Help from school with basic high school graduation needs and expenses

Where can I find more information?