McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act

The McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act (McKinney-Vento Act), which has been recently reauthorized under the Every Student Succeeds Act of 2015 (ESSA, Title IX part A), ensures homeless children/youth have equal access to the same free and appropriate public education as provided to other children /youth.

Definition of Homeless Children/Youth 

The term, Homeless Child(ren)/youth refers to individuals who lack a fixed, regular, and adequate night residences.  This includes:

  1. Children/youth who are sharing the housing of others due to loss of housing, economic hardship or similar reasons; are living in motels, hotels, trailer parks or camping ground due to the lack of alternate accommodations; are living in emergency or transitional shelters; or abandoned in hospitals.
  2. Children/youths that have a primary nighttime residence that is a public or private place not designated for or ordinarily used as a regular sleeping accommodation for human beings.
  3. Children/youths who are living in cars, parks, public spaces, abandoned buildings, substandard housing, bus or train stations, or similar settings; and
  4. Migratory children (as defined in section 1309 of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965, as amended) who qualify as homeless because they are living in circumstances described above.

Rights of Homeless Children/youth

  • Homeless students have a right to either remain in their school of origin or to attend school where they are temporarily residing.
  • Students who shoose to remain in their school of origin have the right to remain there until the end of the school year in which they get permanent housing.
  • Students who choose to enroll in a school where they are temporarily residing must be enrolled immediately, even if they do not bring records usually required for enrollment with them.
  • If a homeless student arrives without records, the Malden Public Schools Homeless Education Liaison and the Parent Information Center will assist the family and contact the previously attended school system to obtain the required records.
  • Transportation will be provided to the homeless children/youth at the request of the parent/caretaker for the duration of homelessness and through the end of the academic year the student becomes permanently housed (45 minutes to 1 hour commute).
  • Homeless students have access to all activities including summer school, extracurricular activities, afterschool programs, etc.)
  • Homeless children/youth have the right to receive credit accrual for partially completed work.
  • Homeless children/youth have the right to receive college and career counseling, assistance with the FASFA and verification of homelessness
  • Living arrangements of homeless children/youth are protected under FERPA and McKinney-Vento.
  • Homeless children/youth receive free lunch.

For more information on the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Program, contact the U.S. Department of Education, Student Achievement and School Accountability Programs (SASA), Office of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA). Website: www.ed.gov/programs/homeless/index.html .

For more information, please contact, Kristy Magras, Homeless Liaison at [email protected] or 781-397-6100 extension 2232.


School and Community Resources for Parents

The goal of the Malden Public Schools’ Title I Family Involvement Program is to provide support to families in becoming involved in their children’s education.  The purpose of the School and Community Guide is to provide information to families on services available in the schools, the city of Malden, and additional social service agencies. Please call or visit their offices to assist you in any concerns your family may be facing.

School and Community Resource Guide – English
School and Community Resource Guide – Portuguese
School and Community Resource Guide – Spanish
School and Community Resource Guide – French
School and Community Resource Guide – Chinese


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