What protections does the McKinney-Vento Act require for homeless children and youths?
Under the McKinney-Vento Act, local educational agencies (LEAs) must review and revise policies and procedures to remove barriers to a high-quality education for homeless children and youths.
Every LEA must designate a local liaison able to carry out their duties to ensure that homeless students are identified and have a full and equal opportunity to succeed in school.
The McKinney-Vento Act also requires that:
- homeless students who move have the right to remain in their schools of origin if that is in the student’s best interest;
- if it is in the student’s best interest to change schools, homeless students must be immediately enrolled in a new school, even if they do not have the records normally required for enrollment;
- transportation must be provided to or from a student’s school of origin, at the request of a parent, guardian, or, in the case of an unaccompanied youth, the local liaison;
- homeless students must have access to all programs and services for which they are eligible;
- unaccompanied youths must be accorded specific protections, including immediate enrollment in school without proof of guardianship; and
- parents, guardians, and unaccompanied youths have the right to dispute an eligibility, school selection, or enrollment decision.