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501.12 Homeless Children and Youth

The board will make reasonable efforts to identify homeless children and youth of school age within the district, encourage their enrollment and eliminate existing barriers to their receiving an education which may exist in District policies or practices.  The designated coordinator for identification of homeless children and for tracking and monitoring programs and activities for these children is the superintendent or the superintendent’s designee.

 

“Homeless child or youth” is defined as a child or youth from the age of 5 years through 21 years who lacks a fixed, regular, and adequate night-time residence and includes the following:

 

1. A child or youth who is sharing the housing of other persons due to loss of housing, economic hardship, or a similar reason; is living in a motel, hotel, trailer park or camping grounds due to the lack of alternative adequate accommodations; is living in an emergency or transitional shelter; is abandoned in a hospital; or is awaiting foster care placement;

2. A child or youth who has a primary nighttime residence that is a public or private place not designed for or ordinarily used as a regular sleeping accommodation for human beings;

3. A child or youth who is living in a car, park, public space, abandoned building, substandard housing, bus or train station, or similar setting; or

4. A migratory child or youth who qualifies as homeless because the child or youth is living in circumstances described in paragraphs “1” through “3” above.

 

School Records: For students transferring out of the district, records may be provided directly to the student or the student’s parents.  In addition, students transferring into the district may provide cumulative records directly to the district.  The district will not require that such records be forwarded from another school district before that student may enroll.  The district will then request the official records from the previous school.

 

Immunization Requirements: Homeless students will not be denied enrollment for lack of immunization records if:

  1. They have a statement signed by a physician stating that immunization would be injurious to the student;
  2. They provide an affidavit stating such immunization would conflict with their religious beliefs;
  3. They are in the process of being immunized; or
  4. They are a transfer student from another school.

 

The district will make a reasonable effort to locate immunization records from the information provided or will arrange for the student to receive immunizations.

 

Waiver of Fees and Charges:  Fees and charges which may present a barrier to the enrollment or transfer of a homeless child or youth may be waived at the discretion of the superintendent.

 

Enrollment Requirements/Placement: Enrollment requirements which may constitute a barrier to the education of a homeless child or youth may be waived at the discretion of the superintendent.  If the district is unable to determine the grade level of the student because of missing or incomplete records, the district shall administer appropriate tests to determine the appropriate grade level for the child.

 

Residency: For purpose of a homeless child or youth, residence for the purpose of attending school shall be where the child actually resides or the child’s District of origin.  A child’s District of origin is the district where the child was last enrolled.  The deciding factor shall be the welfare of the child. 

 

Transportation: Policies or practices regarding transportation of students which might cause a barrier to the attendance of a homeless child or youth may be waived by the superintendent.

 

Special Services: All services which are available to resident students shall be made available to homeless children or youths enrolled in the district.  Services include special education, talented and gifted programs, vocational education, English as a second language programs, health services, and food and nutrition programs.

 

The contents of this policy shall supersede any and all conflicting provisions in District policies dealing with the seven policy areas discussed above.

 

Approved: July 2014

Reviewed: FY 2015-2016, March 14, 2016

Revised: 02/24/17