Federal Funding Essential to Finding and Aiding Homeless Students
In recent years, there has been an unparalleled rise in the number of homeless students in the United States. Between the 2006 – 07 and 2009–10 school years, the number of homeless students increased by 38% (from 679,724 to 939,903). States with some of the most homeless students, New York (82,409) and Texas (76,095), witnessed substantial increases of 87% and 125%, respectively (figure 1). A 2010 National Association for the Education of Homeless Children and Youth (NAEHCY) and First Focus survey of state education departments and local school districts listed the top reasons for the increase in homeless students as the economic downturn (62%), greater community awareness (40%), the foreclosure crisis (38%), and the noteworthy efforts of homeless school liaisons in identifying students (33%).1 Across the U.S., homeless school liaisons have heightened outreach efforts to homeless students and have been particularly successful at identifying those living doubled up with family or friends, who are often more challenging to recognize. Hence, the majority of the overall nationwide increase between the 2006 – 07 and 2009–10 school years is due to a 59% rise in the number of those students living doubled up (table 1). In addition, economic factors stemming from the recession contributed to the overall increase, including an 11% rise in the number of students living in shelters. Despite the 38% increase from the 2006 – 07 school year, the number of students served declined two percent between 2008– 09 and 2009–10. This is due to California—the state with the most homeless students (193,796)—underreporting their numbers in 2009–10. Without considering California, the number of students served rose 12%.2.
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- Homeless kids lag in city schools: report (nydailynews.com)
- California’s Homeless Student Population Struggles In School (huffingtonpost.com)
- Is There Still a Need? (yarnfest.wordpress.com)