New Jersey McKinney-Vento Education for Homeless Children and Youth Program
The Stewart B. McKinney-Vento Education of Homeless Children and youth (McKinney - Vento EHCY) program provides homeless students with protections and services to ensure they enroll in and attend school, complete their high school education and be positioned for success after graduation, so they may avoid poverty and homelessness as adults.
The McKinney-Vento EHCY program ensures homeless children and youth have equal access to a free, appropriate public education and are able to enroll in and attend school. The program funds supplemental academic support services for homeless children and youth to ensure their school success.
Homeless children and youths must have access to the educational and related services that they need to enable them to meet the same challenging state academic standards to which all students are held. In addition, all students may not be separated from the mainstream school environment. SEAs and local agencies (LEAs) are required to review and undertake steps to revise laws, regulations, practices, or policies that may act as barriers to the identification, enrollment, attendance or success in school of homeless children and youths. Each school district, by federal law and state code, is required to have a district homeless liaison that works directly with homeless students and families to supply needed services.
Who are homeless children and youth?
Homeless children and youth are individuals who lack a fixed, regular, and adequate nighttime residence, including:
- Children and youth who are sharing the housing of others due to the loss of housing, economic hardship, or a similar reason, are living in motels, hotels, trailer parks, or camping grounds due to lack of alternative adequate accommodations; are living in emergency transitional shelters; or are abandoned in hospitals.
- Children and youth who have a primary nighttime residence. This is a public or private place not designed for or ordinarily used as regular sleeping accommodation for human beings;
- Children and youth who are sleeping in cars, parks, public spaces, abandoned buildings, substandard housing, bus or train stations, or similar settings; and
- Migratory children who qualify as homeless because the children are living in circumstances described above.
The tenets of the law provide children and youths experiencing homelessness with the following:
- Immediate enrollment even when records are not present
- Right to remain in the school of origin, if in the student’s best interest
- Transportation to the school of origin; and
- Support for academic success
Regions Served: Mercer, Middlesex, Monmouth and Ocean