Homeless Education Program - McKinney-Vento Act

The Kodiak Island Borough School District follows the provisions of the federal McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act, which aims to minimize the educational disruptions experienced by homeless students.

Under McKinney-Vento, homeless students are guaranteed the right to a free, appropriate, public education. When students become homeless, they can remain enrolled in the schools they have been attending, although they might no longer meet residency requirements. McKinney-Vento also guarantees homeless students the right to enroll in a public school even if they lack the typically required documents and immunizations. In addition, homeless students are guaranteed the transportation they need to attend school.  See KIBSD Board of Education policy No. 5112.6 for more information.

Defining Homeless

The McKinney-Vento Act defines homeless children as “individuals who lack a fixed, regular, and adequate nighttime residence.” The act provides examples of children who would fall under this definition:

  • Children and youth sharing housing due to loss of housing, economic hardship or a similar reason
  • Children and youth living in motels, hotels, trailer parks, or campgrounds due to lack of alternative accommodations
  • Children and youth living in emergency or transitional shelters
  • Children and youth abandoned in hospitals
  • Children and youth awaiting foster care placement
  • Children and youth whose primary nighttime residence is not ordinarily used as a regular sleeping accommodation (e.g. park benches, etc)
  • Children and youth living in cars, parks, public spaces, abandoned buildings, substandard housing, bus or train stations
  • Migratory children and youth living in any of the above situations

Understanding Your Rights

If I am homeless, what documents do I need to enroll my child in school?

  • School Records
  • Birth Certificate
  • Immunizations

But, if you do not have these documents, your child cannot be denied entry. The school must help obtain any documents needed for enrollment.

Where will my child go to school?

As a homeless parent, you have the right to decide, along with your child’s school, whether it is in the best interest of your child to stay in the school he or she currently attends, or transfer to the school that is closest to your new location.

Can my child ride the school bus?

Your child’s school will provide transportation for your child.  You cannot be denied access to the school that is in the best interest of your child because of lack of transportation.

Does my child have the same rights as other school children?

Your child has the same rights to school programs and services as all children, including:

  • School Breakfast & Lunch
  • Before/After School Programs
  • Preschool Programs
  • Transportation
  • Special Education
  • Gifted and Talented Programs
  • Career & Technology Education
  • What happens if there is a dispute?

Please read the McKinney Vento Dispute Resolution

Who do I contact if I have questions?

Kim Saunders
Assistant Superintendent of Schools
Phone: 907-486-7550


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