McKinney-Vento Act

If your family is in a temporary living situation resulting in loss of housing due to eviction or economic hardship, your child might be eligible for certain educational rights and services under the McKinney Vento Act.

The McKinney Vento Act is federal legislation designed to help children and youth experiencing homelessness to enroll and succeeded in school. Under McKinney Vento, “homeless children and youth” are defined as individuals who lack a fixed, regular and adequate nighttime residence.

Children and youth living in any of the following situations may be entitled to additional support:

  • Doubled up with friends or family because of loss of housing due to eviction or economic hardship
  • Living without parents or legal guardians, unaccompanied youth/run-aways
  • Living in a motel/hotel
  • Living in an emergency shelter or in transitional housing
  • Living in a place not designed for ordinary sleeping accommodations such as a car, park, campsite, etc.

Under the McKinney Vento Act, children and youth in homeless situations have a right to:

  • Go to school, no matter where they live or how long they’ve lived thee
  • Attend either the local school or the school of origin (the school attended when the student was last permanently housed or the school in which the student was last enrolled), if this is in their best interest
  • Receive transportation to/from school to the extent feasible
  • Enroll in school immediately even if missing records and documents normally required for enrollment, while the school assists in getting those documents
  • Have access to all school programs and services available to all other studetns including English language series, special education, gifted and reading or math support, etc.
  • Free breakfast and lunch
  • And more…

For further information on McKinney Vento and the services available to eligible homeless children and youth, please contact:

  • The school McKinney Vento contact
    • the counselor at your child’s school
  • The district McKinney Vento liaision
  • The state McKinney Vento liaison – Melinda Dyer, Program Manager, Homeless Children and Youth (at the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction) Melinda.dyer@k12.wa.us