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Children Who are Homeless in New Haven

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					Community Connections for
   Homeless Children
        Kara A. Capone, MA, MPH
          Director of Programs
      New Haven Home Recovery, Inc.
                Shelter Options in
                 New Haven, CT
• 4 Family Shelter options
  – CCA –(2 sites) = 17 families (DSS)
  – NHHR (2 sites) = 13 women & children
    (DSS & City)
  – Life Haven = 20 women & children (DSS &
    City)
  – Domestic Violence – 6 women & children
    (DSS)
               Homeless Kids in New
                   Haven & CT

• In the past two years, NH shelters (excluding
  DV) sheltered 658 children. 55% were 0-5
  years old. NHHR has over 1,700 requests for
  shelter, only 16% could be accommodated
• There are an est. 13,000 homeless children
  statewide
• 40% of all people who are homeless are
  children
                       McKinney-Vento
                         Overview
McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act
• Originally authorized in 1987
• Reauthorized in January 2002 as Title
  X, Part C of No Child Left Behind
  (NCLB)
• The primary piece of federal legislation
  dealing with the education of children
  and youth experiencing homelessness in
  U.S. public schools.
 www.serve.org/nche/
                       McKinney-Vento
                       Overview (Cont.)
• Provides stability, access and support
  for academic success for homeless
  children and youth, including preschool-
  aged children
• To qualify for these rights, children and
  youth must be considered homeless
  according to the McKinney-Vento
  definition of homelessness.

 www.serve.org/nche/
                        Homeless Definition
Homeless children and youth are minors who lack a
  fixed, regular, and adequate nighttime residence. It
  includes children and youth who:
• are sharing the housing of other persons due to loss
  of housing, economic hardship, or a similar reason;
• are living in motels, hotels, trailer parks, or camping
  grounds due to the lack of alternative adequate
  accommodations;
• are living in emergency or transitional shelters;
• are abandoned in hospitals; or are awaiting foster
  care placement

  www.serve.org/nche/
                       Homeless Definition
                            (Cont.)

• 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
• are living in cars, parks, public spaces,
  abandoned buildings, substandard housing, bus
  or train stations, or similar settings; and
• migrant children and youth who qualify as
  homeless

 www.serve.org/nche/
                        Homeless Definition
                             (Cont.)
Subgroups:
• Children and Youth in Homeless Families
• Unaccompanied Homeless Youth (runaway, abandoned, and/or
  unsupervised youth)

Under the McKinney-Vento Act, an individual or family who lacks a
  fixed, regular and adequate residence is considered homeless.
• Fixed residence: one that is stationary, permanent and not
  subject to change.
• Regular residence: one that is used on a regular (i.e., nightly)
  basis.
• Adequate residence: one which is sufficient for meeting both
  the physical and psychological needs typically met in home
  environments.


  www.serve.org/nche/
                       School Involvement
• Every LEA (Local Educational Agency) must
  designate a local homeless education liaison
• Responsibilities:
  – Identify homeless children and youth
  – Ensure that homeless students enroll in and have
    full and equal opportunity to succeed in school
  – Post public notice of educational rights
  – Coordinate and collaborate with agencies
  – Arrange services and transportation
  – Resolve disputes
 www.serve.org/nche/
                       Educational Rights
Children and youth experiencing
  homelessness have the right to:
• Go to school
• Continue in the school they last
  attended before becoming homeless
• Receive transportation to the school
  they last attended

 www.serve.org/nche/
                       Educational Rights
                            (Cont.)
• Attending a school and participate in school
  programs with children who are not homeless.
• Enroll without giving a permanent address.
• Enroll and attend classes without
  immunization records or any other required
  documents
• Receive the same special programs and
  services, as provided to all other children
• Receive transportation to school and to school
  programs
 www.serve.org/nche/
               The Children’s
            Education Partnership
• NHHR, Head Start, Diaper Bank and
  DSS got together to discuss the
  problem
• Convened interested stakeholders
• TA from from Regional Head Start
• Put together a plan to address the
  school readiness needs of homeless
  children age 0-5 years.
                        Partnership
Goal: Develop strong collaboration between
 agencies including Memo’s of Understanding
  – Create collaborative steering committee consisting
    of a representative from each organization to
    meet quarterly
  – Work with stakeholders to ensure a coordinated
    system of care. Issue a quarterly newsletter on
    progress
  – Create and sign MOU’s between agencies
                      Education
Goal: Universal understanding of
 McKinney-Vento and ability to use
 information effectively
  – Education of sheltered parents
  – Education of shelter staff
  – Education of local school staff
                  Identification &
                    Enrollment
Goal: Increase the number of homeless
 children identified as eligible for and
 enrolled in early childhood education
  – Staff ID children eligible
  – Applications completed and submitted
  – Children enrolled in school
                  Identification &
                 Enrollment (Cont.)
Goal: All children who are homeless will be
 enrolled in a quality education program
  – DSS collaboration with Head Start
  – Outreach agencies
  – Establish point people at agencies
  – Outreach other services providers: mental
    health, substance abuse.
  – Identify barriers to enrollment
                       Advocacy
• Goal: Homeless children will be better
  served by the school system through
  advocacy
  – Participation of staff in IEPs and other
    educational meetings
  – Facilitate communication with teachers,
    social workers and other school personnel
                    Outreach
• Locally: School Readiness Council, Board
  of Alderman-Human Services, Policy
  Council, City Health Dept-Manos, DPH
  School of Health Services, Head Start
  School Advisory, BOE School Based
  Health Clinics, New Haven Continuum,
  Voices for Children
                     Outreach
• Statewide: Commission on Children,
  Daycare Council, School Readiness,
  Department of Social Services,
  Department of Children and Families,
  Department of Education, Department
  of Public Health, legislators and elected
  / appointed officials
                               Resources
• National Center for Homeless Education
http://www.serve.org/nche/
• National Association for the Education of Homeless Children and
   Youth
http://www.naehcy.org/
• National Law Center on Homelessness and Poverty
http://www.nlchp.org/
• Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) 2004
http://www.ed.gov/policy/speced/guid/idea/idea2004.html
• No Child Left Behind Title X, Part C
http://www.ed.gov/policy/elsec/leg/esea02/pg116.html

				
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posted:4/27/2011
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