Marion Community Schools, in compliance with the McKinney-Vento Act, provides services to students who are homeless.
The federal McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act was signed into law in 1987 with the goal of ensuring the enrollment, attendance, and success of homeless children and youths in school. It provides states with funding to help remove barriers to education, and it puts specific requirements in place for schools in regards to the rights of homeless students, and services to be offered to them. Click here to learn more about the law.
Please explore the information and links below to learn more about these rights and services.
Who is considered homeless?
Children and youths who do not have a fixed, regular, adequate nighttime residence are considered homeless. This can include shelter arrangements such as:
- "Doubling up": Many families are not living in homeless shelters, but do not have a home of their own. Families who are staying with family members or friends are referred to as "doubling up." Not all families that are doubled up are homeless, but families who stay with others because of a loss of housing or due to economic hardship are covered by the McKinney-Vento Act and are entitled to the rights it provides for students.
- Living in motels/hotels, trailer parks/camp grounds due to the lack of alternative adequate accommodations.
- Living in emergency or transitional shelters.
- Living in public or private places not designed for or ordinarily used as living/sleeping accommodations for humans.
- Living in cars, parks, public spaces, abandoned buildings, substandard housing, bus or train stations, or similar settings.
In addition, there are other categories of children and youths who qualify as homeless under the McKinney-Vento Act:
- Those who are awaiting foster care placement.
- Those who are migratory and living in conditions described above.
- Those who have been abandoned in hospitals.
- Those who are unaccompanied and are not in the physical custody of a parent or guardian.
Residency and educational rights of homeless students:
The McKinney-Vento Act provides specific rights for homeless students, including:
- Immediate enrollment, even without the documents normally required at the time of enrollment, such as proof of residency, medical records, or school records. (These documents will most likely be need to be provided at some point, but not at the time of enrollment, as is usually required.)
- Enrollment at the school in the student's best interest, whether that be the school he or she last attended (even if the student is no longer living in that area), or at the school in the area where the student is temporarily staying.
- Access to free meals and textbooks, Title I and other educational programs, and other comparable services, including transportation to and from school.
- Attendance in the same classes and activities that their peers participate in, without the fear of being singled out or treated differently because of their housing situation.
If you believe you qualify for services under McKinney-Vento, please contact the social worker at your school immediately. They can help with problems related to enrollment, requests for transportation, and many other services. We want to help you navigate this difficult time, and to help your student to succeed in school. Please contact us if you have questions. Click the links below to view the staff list and contact information for your school.
>> Elementary district boundaries / address lookup: If you need to find out which MCS elementary school district you are currently staying in, click here to use our Infofinder i web tool. (Note: Starting in fifth grade, all students in the district attend the same school.)
- Little Giants Preschool
- Allen Elementary (kindergarten through 4th grade; see address lookup information above)
- Frances Slocum Elementary (kindergarten through 4th grade; see address lookup information above)
- Kendall Elementary (kindergarten through 4th grade; see address lookup information above)
- Riverview Elementary (kindergarten through 4th grade; see address lookup information above)
- Justice Intermediate (all 5th- and 6th-graders)
- McCulloch Junior High (all 7th- and 8th-graders)
- Marion High School (all 9th- through 12th-graders)
If you need more information , or if you disagree with a decision that has been made regarding your child's school enrollment or services provided, please call the MCS district McKinney-Vento contact, 765-662-2546, ext. 137.
MCS's McKinney-Vento community liaison is Lori Brane, who can be contacted through Allen Elementary School, 765-664-7355. She can help provide you with information about additional services that may be available in the community.