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Identifying Children and Youth Experiencing Homelessness

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NCHE Resources

Identifying Children and Youth in Homeless Situations
This explains the key provisions of the McKinney-Vento Act related to the identification of homeless children and youth, explores challenges with identifying homeless children and youth, and provides strategies to increase LEA capacity to identify all children and youth experiencing homelessness.
Download Identifying Children and Youth in Homeless Situations.


Other Resources

A Guide to Counting Unsheltered Homeless People
This guide, published by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and revised in January 2008, describes several methods for identifying, counting, and learning about homeless people who are unlikely to be found in shelters or in other residential programs within a local homeless assistance network. Information about these approaches was gathered from communities throughout the country; examples of their methods are provided throughout the guide.
Download the guide.


Sample Forms, Materials, and Policies

Checklist for Identifying Students Experiencing Homelessness
This quick-reference checklist from the Texas Homeless Education Office (THEO) shares basic strategies for schools and school districts to identify children and youth experiencing homelessness. It briefly explains the legal requirements for identification and how identifying homeless students can help school districts be more competitive for federal funds. The checklist is designed for ease of use and includes links to sample resources.
Download the checklist.

Iowa Identification and Needs Assessment Form
This form may be used by schools to record pertinent information regarding children and youth identified as living in homeless situations. The form is useful in obtaining a cumulative count of the number of students identified, determining individual needs, maintaining student-level data, and generating summary reports of demographic data, characteristics, and needs of homeless children and youth.
Download the form.

Vermont Local Liaison Referral Form
This form, created by the Vermont Department of Education, can be used at the district level to encourage referral to the local homeless education liaison of students identified as potentially living in a homeless situation. While the form was created for Vermont districts, it can be customized for use in other states.
Download the form.

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The National Center for Homeless Education (NCHE) is the U.S. Department of Education's technical assistance center for the federal Education for Homeless Children and Youth (EHCY) Program. NCHE is housed at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro.

This website was produced with funding from the U.S. Department of Education, on contract no. ED-01-CO-0092/0001. The content of this website does not necessarily reflect the views or policies of the U.S. Department of Education or the University of North Carolina at Greensboro; nor does mention of trade names, commercial products, or organizations imply endorsement by the U.S. Government.

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