6173 BP - Education for Homeless Students

Board Policy No. 6173

Policy adopted:  November 1, 2007
Policy Revised: October 19, 2023


The Governing Board believes that the identification of students experiencing homelessness is critical to improving the educational outcomes of such students and ensuring that students experiencing homelessness have access to the same free and appropriate public education provided to other children within the district. The district shall provide students experiencing homelessness with access to education and other services necessary for these students to meet the same challenging academic standards as other students.

When there are at least 15 students experiencing homelessness in the district or a district school, the district's local control and accountability plan (LCAP) shall include goals and specific actions to improve student achievement and other outcomes of students experiencing homelessness. (Education Code 52052, 52060, 52064)

The Superintendent or designee shall review district policies at least once every three years and recommend updates to ensure removal of any barriers to the education of homeless students and unaccompanied youth. Any such review shall address identification, enrollment, and retention of such students, including those barriers that are due to absences or outstanding fees or fines. (Education Code 48851.3, 42 USC 11432)

The Superintendent or designee shall designate an appropriate staff person to serve as a liaison for homeless children and youths. The district liaison for homeless students shall fulfill the duties specified in 42 USC 11432 to assist in identifying and supporting students experiencing homelessness to succeed in school, and as specified in Education Code 48851.3 related to trainings for district staff providing assistance to students experiencing homelessness.

The Superintendent or designee shall ensure that each district school identifies all students experiencing homelessness and unaccompanied youths enrolled at the school. (Education Code 48851)
To ensure easy identification of students experiencing homelessness, the Superintendent or designee shall annually provide and administer a housing questionnaire developed by the California Department of Education (CDE) to all parents/guardians of students and all unaccompanied youths. (Education Code 48851)

If the primary language of a student's parent/guardian or an unaccompanied youth is not English, either the housing questionnaire shall be made available in the primary language of the student's parent/guardian or the unaccompanied youth pursuant to Education Code 48985, or an appropriate translation of the housing questionnaire shall be provided upon request of a student's parent/guardian or an unaccompanied youth. (Education Code 48851)

The Superintendent or designee shall report to CDE the number of students experiencing homelessness, including unaccompanied youths, enrolled in the district as identified from the housing questionnaire described above. (Education Code 48851)

In addition, the Superintendent or designee shall ensure that the district liaison's contact information and other information on homelessness, including, but not limited to, information regarding the educational rights and resources available to persons experiencing homelessness, are posted on the district and school web sites as specified in the accompanying administrative regulation. (Education Code 48852.6)

The Superintendent or designee shall ensure that placement decisions for students experiencing homelessness are based on the student's best interest as defined in law and administrative regulation.
Each student experiencing homelessness shall be provided services that are comparable to services offered to other students in the school, including, but not limited to, transportation, educational programs for which the student meets the eligibility criteria (such as federal Title I services or similar state or local programs, programs for students with disabilities, and educational programs for English learners), career and technical education programs, programs for gifted and talented students, and school nutrition programs. (Education Code 48850; 42 USC 11432)

Students experiencing homelessness shall not be segregated into a separate school or program based on their status as homeless, and shall not be stigmatized in any way. However, the Superintendent or designee may separate students experiencing homelessness on school grounds as necessary for short periods of time for health and safety emergencies or to provide temporary, special, and supplementary services to meet their unique needs. (42 USC 11432, 11433)

The Superintendent or designee shall ensure that information and/or materials for students experiencing homelessness are provided in a manner and form understandable to the student's parents/guardians and to unaccompanied youths.

Information about the living situation of a student experiencing homelessness shall be considered part of a student's educational record, subject to the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act, shall not be deemed to be directory information as defined in 20 USC 1232g, and shall not be released without written consent. (42 USC 11432)

The Superintendent or designee shall coordinate with other agencies and entities to ensure that students experiencing homelessness are promptly identified, ensure that students experiencing homelessness have access to and are in reasonable proximity to available education and related support services, and raise the awareness of school personnel and service providers of the effects of short-term stays in a shelter and other challenges associated with homelessness. Toward these ends, the Superintendent or designee shall collaborate with local social services agencies, other agencies or entities providing services to students experiencing homelessness, and, if applicable, transitional housing facilities. In addition, the Superintendent or designee shall coordinate transportation, transfer of school records, and other interdistrict activities with other local educational agencies. As necessary, the Superintendent or designee shall coordinate, within the district and with other involved local educational agencies, services for students experiencing homelessness and services for students with disabilities. (42 USC 11432)

At least annually, the district liaison and other appropriate staff shall participate in professional development and other technical assistance activities to assist them in identifying and meeting the needs of students experiencing homelessness. Such professional development and technical assistance shall include, but are not limited to, training on the district's homeless education program policies, definitions of terms related to homelessness, recognition of signs that students are experiencing or are at risk of experiencing homelessness, the steps that should be taken once a potentially homeless student is identified, and how to connect students experiencing homelessness with appropriate
housing and service providers. (Education Code 48851.3, 48852.5; 42 USC 11432)

At least annually, the Superintendent or designee shall report to the Board on the identification of and outcomes for students experiencing homelessness, which may include, but are not limited to, the housing questionnaire responses, school attendance, student achievement test results, promotion and retention rates by grade level, graduation rates, suspension/expulsion rates, and other outcomes related to any goals and specific actions identified in the LCAP.

Based on the evaluation data, the district shall revise its strategies as needed to more effectively identify and support the education of students experiencing homelessness.

Legal References
State Code
5 CCR 4600-4670 Uniform complaint procedures
Education Code
Ed. Code 39807.5 Payment of transportation costs by parents
Ed. Code 48850 Academic achievement of students in foster care and homeless children
Ed. Code 48850-48859 Education of foster youth and homeless students
Ed. Code 48851 Identification of homeless children and youths and unaccompanied youths; housing questionnaire
Ed. Code 48851.3 Homeless education program policies; liaison responsibilities
Ed. Code 48851.5 Local educational agency liaison for homeless children and youths
Ed. Code 48852.3 Monitoring for compliance with chapter
Ed. Code 48852.5 Notice of educational rights of homeless students
Ed. Code 48852.6 Information regarding homelessness
Ed. Code 48852.7 Education of homeless students; immediate enrollment
Ed. Code 48859 Definitions
Ed. Code 48915.5 Recommended expulsion; foster youth with disabilities
Ed. Code 48918.1 Notice of recommended expulsion
Ed. Code 48985 Notices to parents in language other than English
Ed. Code 51225.1-51225.3 Graduation requirements
Ed. Code 52052 Accountability; numerically significant student subgroups
Ed. Code 52060-52077 Local control and accountability plan
Federal Code
20 USC 1087vv Free Application for Federal Student Aid; definitions
20 USC 1232g Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) of 1974
20 USC 1400-1482 Individuals with Disabilities Education Act
20 USC 6311 State plan
42 USC 11431-11435 McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act
42 USC 12705 Cranston-Gonzalez National Affordable Housing Act; state and local strategies
Management Resources
California Child Welfare Council Publication Partial Credit Model Policy and Practice Recommendations,
September 2013
California Department of Education Publication Federal Program Monitoring Instrument
California Department of Education Publication Homeless Education Dispute Resolution Process, March 2020
National Center for Homeless Education Publication Homeless Liaison Toolkit, 2020
U.S. Department of Education Guidance Education for Homeless Children and Youths Program, Non-Regulatory Guidance, August 2018
Website CSBA District and County Office of Education Legal Services
Website California State University
Website University of California
Website California Department of Education, Homeless Children and Youth Education
Website National Center for Homeless Education at SERVE
Website National Homelessness Law Center
Website U.S. Department of Education - Education for Homeless Children and Youths Grants for State and Local Activities
Website California Community Colleges
Website California Interscholastic Federation
Website California Child Welfare Council
Cross References
0410 Nondiscrimination In District Programs And Activities
0415 Equity
0460 Local Control And Accountability Plan
0470 COVID-19 Mitigation Plan
0500 Accountability
1113 District And School Websites
1113-E(1) District And School Websites
1312.3 Uniform Complaint Procedures
1312.3-E(1) Uniform Complaint Procedures
1312.3-E(2) Uniform Complaint Procedures
1400 Relations Between Other Governmental Agencies And The Schools
3250 Transportation Fees
3260 Fees And Charges
3515.4 Recovery For Property Loss Or Damage
3541 Transportation Routes And Services
3550 Food Service/Child Nutrition Program
3553 Free And Reduced Price Meals
4112.9 Employee Notifications
4112.9-E(1) Employee Notifications
4131 Staff Development
4312.9 Employee Notifications
4312.9-E(1) Employee Notifications
4331 Staff Development
5111 Admission
5111.1 District Residency
5113.1 Chronic Absence And Truancy
5113.11 Attendance Supervision
5125 Student Records
5125.1 Release Of Directory Information
5125.1-E(1) Release Of Directory Information
5125.2 Withholding Grades, Diploma Or Transcripts
5132 Dress And Grooming
5141.22 Infectious Diseases
5141.26 Tuberculosis Testing
5141.31 Immunizations
5141.32 Health Screening For School Entry
5141.6 School Health Services
5144.1 Suspension And Expulsion/Due Process
5144.2 Suspension And Expulsion/Due Process (Students With Disabilities)
5145.6 Parent/Guardian Notifications
5145.6-E(1) Parent/Guardian Notifications
5148.2 Before/After School Programs
5148.3 Preschool/Early Childhood Education
6011 Academic Standards
6120 Response To Instruction And Intervention
6143 Courses Of Study
6145 Extracurricular And Cocurricular Activities
6145.2 Athletic Competition
6145.2 Athletic Competition
6146.1 High School Graduation Requirements
6146.3 Reciprocity Of Academic Credit
6159 Individualized Education Program
6159.1 Procedural Safeguards And Complaints For Special Education
6159.3 Appointment Of Surrogate Parent For Special Education Students
6162.51 State Academic Achievement Tests
6164.2 Guidance/Counseling Services
6164.5 Student Success Teams
6171 Title I Programs
6172 Gifted And Talented Student Program
6173.1 Education For Foster Youth
6174 Education For English Learners
6177 Summer Learning Programs
6178 Career Technical Education
6179 Supplemental Instruction
6190 Evaluation Of The Instructional Program


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