Skip To Main Content

Header Top

Header Utility

Header Bottom


Enrolling Students Experiencing Homelessness in School

HETAC Resources

Prompt and Proper Placement: Enrolling Students Experiencing Homelessness without Records

This HETAC tip sheet outlines McKinney-Vento Act requirements related to immediate enrollment and school records for students experiencing homelessness, and suggests strategies to help school districts develop a streamlined approach to initial student assessment when complete school records are not present.

Other Resources

Memorandum on Immediate School Enrollment from Former Surgeon General Dr. Joycelyn Elders

This 2007 memo from Dr. Joycelyn Elders explains that students and the broader community are protected by the same natural public health controls, often called “herd immunity”, that protect students exempted from school enrollment-related immunization requirements for medical reasons. The memo also affirms that, due to herd immunity, the McKinney-Vento Act's immediate enrollment and full school participation requirements do not present a significant health risk to the student body or school community.

National Center for Homeless Education: Enrolling Children and Youth Experiencing Homelessness in School webpage

This National Center for Homeless Education webpage provides informational and practical resources on the school enrollment of children and youth experiencing homelessness.

SchoolHouse Connection: Removing Barriers to Online Enrollment for Students Experiencing Homelessness webpage

The McKinney-Vento Act requires state and local educational agencies to remove barriers to the school enrollment of children and youth experiencing homelessness. Unfortunately, the increasing trend of online enrollment may erect barriers to the immediate enrollment and full school participation for these students. This SchoolHouse Connection webpage recommends strategies for ensuring that online enrollment processes are accessible for youth and families experiencing homelessness.

Sample Materials

California Department of Education: Model Housing Questionnaire and Instructions for Usage

Under California’s Assembly Bill (AB) 27, school districts must administer a housing questionnaire to all students annually to ensure the identification of children and youth experiencing homelessness. This questionnaire must include an explanation of the rights of students experiencing homelessness. This California Department of Education sample questionnaire can be used by districts as is - including as part of their enrollment process - or customized to meet local needs to meet this statutory requirement.