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Policies » Section J: Students » JFABD: Admission Of Homeless Students

Policy Date: 12/05/2019

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To the extent practical and as required by law, the district will work with homeless students and their families to provide stability in school attendance and other services. Special attention will be given to ensuring the enrollment and attendance of homeless students not currently attending school.

Homeless students will be provided district services for which they are eligible, including preschool programs, Title I, similar state programs, special education, bilingual education, vocational and technical education programs, gifted and talented programs and school nutrition programs.

Homeless students are defined as lacking a fixed, regular and adequate nighttime residence, including:
1.Sharing the housing of other persons due to loss of housing or economic hardship;
2.Living in motels, hotels, trailer parks or camping grounds due to lack of alternative adequateaccommodations;
3.Living in emergency or transitional shelters;
4.Are abandoned in hospitals;
5.Living in public or private places not designed for or ordinarily used as regular sleepingaccommodations for human beings;
6.Living in cars, parks, public spaces, abandoned buildings, substandard housing,transportation stations or similar settings;
7.Are migratory children living in conditions described in previous examples.

The Superintendent and/or designee shall designate an appropriate staff person to be the district’s liaison for homeless students and their families.

To the extent feasible, homeless students will continue to be enrolled in their school of origin while they remain homeless or until the end of the academic year in which they obtain permanent housing. Instead of remaining in the school of origin, the parent or guardian of homeless students may request enrollment in the school in which the attendance area is where the student is actually living, or other schools.

If there is an enrollment dispute, the student shall be immediately enrolled in the school in which enrollment is sought, pending resolution of the dispute. The parent or guardian shall be informed of the district’s decision and their appeal rights in writing. Unaccompanied youth will also be enrolled pending resolution of the dispute.

Once the enrollment decision is made, the school shall immediately enroll the student, pursuant to district policies. If the student does not have immediate access to the immunization records, the student shall be admitted under a personal exception. Students and families should be encouraged to obtain current immunization records or immunizations as soon as possible, and the district liaison is directed to assist. Records from the student’s previous school shall be requested from the previous school pursuant to district policies. Emergency contact information is required at the time of enrollment consistent with district policies.

Homeless students are entitled to transportation to their school of origin or the school where they are to be enrolled. If the school of origin is in a different district, or a homeless student is living in another district but will attend his/her school of origin in this district; the districts will make reasonable efforts to coordinate the transportation services necessary for the student.

The district’s liaison for homeless students and their families shall coordinate with local social services agencies that provide services to homeless children and youths and their families; other school districts on issues of transportation and records transfers; and state and local housing agencies responsible for comprehensive housing affordability strategies. The district’s liaison will also review the district policies that may act as barriers to the enrollment of homeless students.

All staff shall take reasonable steps to ensure that homeless students are not segregated or stigmatized, their homeless status is not revealed or alluded to in the presence of other students, and that educational decisions are made in the best interests of those students.

Legal References:
-20 U.S.C. 1232g (Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act – “FERPA”)
-20 U.S.C. 1701-1758 (Equal Educational Opportunities Act of 1974 – “EEOA”)
-20 U.S.C. 6311 (g)(1)(E) and 6312(c)(5) (provisions in ESSA regarding obligations to students infoster care)
-42 U.S.C. 671 (a)(10) and 675 (1)(G) (child welfare agency requirements related to supportingnormalcy for children in foster care and ensuring educational stability of children in foster care)
-42 U.S.C. §11431 and §11432 (McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act – Education forHomeless Children and Youth)
-Public Law 110-351, The Fostering Connections to Success and Increasing Adoptions Act of 2008
-34 C.F.R. 200.30 (f)(1)(iii) (ESSA’s definition of “foster care”)
-Plyler v. Doe, 457 U.S. 202 (1982)
-RSA 193:12, Legal Residence Required
-“N.H. Guidance on ESSA and Foster Care to Ensure that the Educational Needs of Children andYouth in Foster Care are Being Addressed”, January 2017,NHDOE and NHDHHS

Adopted: August 7, 2003
Revised: December 5, 2019