Homeless Education Program
Education is a critical element in breaking the cycle of poverty and homelessness. Education can open doors to possibilities and future dreams and accomplishments for children whose lives have been restricted and confined. For homeless children/youth, school should be a place they can count on for stability. The goal of District 20's Homeless Education Program is to ensure equal access to education and all programs, as well as preserve the dignity of all homeless children and youth as they enter the public school system and ensure that children do not feel isolated or stigmatized due to their homelessness.
The McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act (42 U.S.C. 11431 et seq.) (McKinney-Vento Act) and the Illinois Education for Homeless Children Act (105 ILCS 45) are designed to address the challenges that homeless children and youths have faced in enrolling, attending, and succeeding in school.
How Can District 20 Help?
- Advocate for homeless children and their families.
- Help insure that homeless children in the district will not feel stigmatized due to their homeless status.
- Provide school supplies, including backpacks to each child.
- Coordinate efforts of district transportation and external resources to take students to and from school as needed.
- Make all school activities, including before and after school programs accessible to each child.
- Provide tutoring and/or accessibility to tutoring as needed.
- Help parents complete enrollment forms and assist in obtaining school records, immunization records, birth certificates and other records as needed.
- Coordinate efforts with local community agencies to provide basic needs and services for homeless students and families, including medical, vision and dental care on a limited basis.
- Create awareness of, and promote sensitivity to the educational and legal rights of homeless children and youth in school personnel.