The Homeless Support Program serves homeless students enrolled in Bellingham Public Schools. Services are provided through existing programs and strategies that integrate homeless individuals with non-homeless individuals. This program is designed to reduce isolation, maximize stability and maintain consistency for this population of children and youth. The McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act is a federal law that guarantees all children and youth the right to an equal education regardless of their living situation. Protection under the McKinney-Vento Act extends to those who lack a fixed, regular and adequate nighttime residence.
Homeless Support Program Coordinators:
Homeless Support Specialist
Homeless Support Specialist
Information for Parents/Guardians/Youth
Who qualifies for McKinney-Vento (homeless) services? Children who lack a fixed,regular, and adequate nighttime residence:
- Sharing the housing of others due to economic hardship (doubled up)
- Living in motels, hotels, trailer parks, camping grounds due to lack of adequate alternative accomodations
- Living in emergency or transitional shelters
- Living in a public or private place not designated for humans to live
- Living in cars, parks, abandoned buildings, substandard housing, bus or train stations
- Migratory children livingin above circumstances
- Unaccompanied youth (not in the physical custody of a parent or guardian)
- Children awaiting foster care placement
All homeless students have the right to:
- School stability - remain at their "school of origin"
- Immediate enrollment - even without required registration documents
- Transportation - to "school of origin"
- Free school meals - all homeless students automatically qualify
(click here for a complete list of services a homeless student is eligible to receive)
Contact a Homeless Program Coordinator to determine if your child is McKinney-Vento eligible and/or to request services. The Bellingham School District's Homeless Program Coordinators are Roxana Parise 360.676.6523 and Sarah Simpson 360.676.6524
State Homeless Resources
National Homeless Resources
- NAEHCY - National Association for the Education of Homeless Children and Youth is a voice and social conscience for the education of children and youth experiencing homelessness. NAEHCY accomplishes this through advocacy, partnerships, and education.
- NCHE - National Center for Homeless Education at SERVE is the U.S. Department of Education's technical assistance and information center in the area of homeless education.
- National Law Center for Homelessness and Poverty - Lawyers working to end homelessness.
- National Network for Youth - is working to create a community of agencies, people and resources to champion the needs of homeless and runaway youth, to ensure that opportunities for growth and development be available to youth everywhere.