Homeless Students, Rights of

Estimates suggest that as many as 760,000 Americans are homeless on any given night and up to 2 million experience homelessness each year, among them many children in need of an education. Prior to 1987, there was no federal law or policy addressing the education of homeless children. In 1987, the U.S. Congress took steps to address the issue through the enactment of legislation commonly known as the Stewart B. McKinney Homeless Assistance Act. The law was later renamed as the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act (hereinafter “McKinney-Vento Act”). The McKinney-Vento Act was reauthorized as part of the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001.

The McKinney-Vento Act provides that students who find themselves in homeless situations not be excluded from school. The Act defines “Homeless children ...

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