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Pennsylvania’s Education for the Homeless Children and Youth Experiencing Homelessness Program

Blanket Project for the children at the Homeless Shelters

Region #6 of the Pennsylvania’s Education for the Children and Youth Experiencing Homelessness has asked school districts from the coverage area to put together No Sew Blankets. These blankets are being donated to the homeless shelters and directly to children in Armstrong, Blair, Cambria, Cameron, Centre, Clearfield, Clinton, Elk, Indiana, Jefferson and Potter counties. The blankets are made by the children for the children.

Families enter the shelters for many reasons, house fires, domestic violence, eviction, loss of employment to name a few. Children, at any age, need to have something that makes them feel more comfortable whether that be for warmth or security. This is why the project of the blanket was chosen for the project.

Thank you to all of the schools that participated in this worth while cause.




About The Program

Pennsylvania’s Education for the Homeless Children and Youth Experiencing Homelessness Program. Region #6 consists of the following counties.

  • Armstrong
  • Blair
  • Cambria
  • Cameron
  • Centre
  • Clearfield
  • Clinton
  • Elk
  • Indiana
  • Jefferson
  • Potter

Purpose and History

To ensure that homeless children and youth have access to the same free appropriate public education as other children and youth, the McKinney Act of 1987 was reauthorized under the No Child Left behind Act.

The ARIN Intermediate Unit was one of first rural homeless programs that began in 1992 that services Armstrong and Indiana counties.

Beginning with the 2005-2006 school year, the Pennsylvania’s Education for the Homeless Children and Youth Experiencing Homelessness Program was expanded to support the education of homeless children and youth in eleven counties in what now is Region #6. The ARIN Intermediate Unit directly works with all eleven counties giving support to School Districts, Shelters, Head Start Programs and other community agencies.

A main goal of the Pennsylvania’s Education for the Homeless Children and Youth Experiencing Homelessness Program is “to provide activities for, and services to , homeless children, including preschool-aged homeless children and youth that enable such children and youths to enroll in, attend, and succeed in school, or, if appropriate, in preschool programs.”

Some of the main objectives of the Pennsylvania’s Education for the Homeless Children and Youth Experiencing Homelessness Program are to inform local school districts of their responsibilities to homeless children and youth, to increase awareness about the needs of homeless children, reveal and overcome possible educational barriers, explain current legislation and policies, and provide practical tips for working with homeless children.

Pennsylvania’s Education for the Homeless Children and Youth Experiencing Homelessness Program is a federally funded program, The McKinney-Vento Homeless Education Assistance Improvements Act of 2001.

Who is Homeless?

To establish laws that will protect the educational rights of homeless children, a clear definition had to be established.

Who is Homeless? - Federal Guidelines

Federal guidelines states that Homeless children may be found in these places or situations:

  • Public or private shelters.
  • Public or private places not designated for or ordinarily used as regular sleeping accommodations such as vehicles, parks, motels, campgrounds, etc.
  • Living with a parent in a domestic violence shelter.
  • Individuals and /or families living with relatives or friends due to lack of housing.
  • Living in transitional housing programs.
  • Runaway children (under 18 years of age) and children and youth who have been abandoned or forced out of home by parents or other caretakers. They may be in temporary shelters awaiting assistance from social service agencies, or may live on the street or move form place to place among family members, friends or acquaintances.
  • This also includes such youth from 18 through 21 years of age who may still be eligible for educational services in regular or special education.
  • Children of migrant families who lack adequate housing
  • Children abandoned in hospitals or awaiting foster care.
  • School-age, unwed mothers or expectant mothers living in housed for unwed mothers when they have no other available living accommodations.

For more information contact the National Center for Homeless Education

http://www.serve.org/nche

How we can be of assistance:

Minimize disruptions to education by addressing the PA Department of Education’s Education for Homeless Children and Youth Programs top ten barriers to education.

Pennsylvania's Homeless Children's Initiative

Center for Schools and Communities

Direct Services

  • Removal of barriers to education
  • School enrollment assistance
  • Emergency transportation
  • School supplies
  • Referral to preschool programs
  • Year round tutoring
  • Parent workshops
  • Trainings for school district personal, homeless liaisons, shelter providers and community agencies
  • Tracking/transfer of records
  • Agency referrals
Monthly Reporting Forms

Number of homeless students, housing arrangements, various types of homeless students.

Monthly Reporting Form for Schools

Monthly Reporting Form for Shelters

Monthly Reporting Form for HeadStart

Monthly Reporting Form for Early HeadStart

Support Provided To StudentsTo be filled out by districts for each student. This form is to be completed by the end of the year and kept in your file and copied to Regional Coordinator.

School District Policy 251
Other Forms

Handbook For Shelter Staff

Release Form for Shelters-Districts

Dispute LetterThese are the procedures to follow when a dispute has arisen. (For school use)

Enrollment Dispute ResolutionTo be given to parents or guardians if they disagree with your decision of whether that child is homeless.

Sample LetterAn example of dispute procedures.

Contact

Andrea Sheesley
Regional Homeless Coordinator
asheesley@iu28.org