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Assistance for the Homeless Children Program

Information on the Assistance for the Homeless Children and Youth Program.

Funding Source

U.S. Department of Education (ED)

Program Purpose

The purpose of the program is to provide financial assistance to local educational agencies (LEAs) serving homeless children and youth displaced by Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria, or the 2017 California wildfires for which a major disaster or emergency has been declared under sections 401 or 501 of the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act (42 U.S.C. 5170 and 5190) (covered disaster or emergency) to address the educational and related needs of these students consistent with section 723 of the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act (McKinney-Vento Act) and section 106 of title IV of division B of Public Law 109–148 (the Hurricane Education Recovery Act). California has received a grant award in the amount of $87,554.

Eligible Recipients

LEAs (which include local school districts, county offices of education, and charter schools).

Definition of Displaced Student

A displaced student is a student who:

  • On the date that is one week prior to the date that the major disaster or emergency was declared for the area, resided in that area; and
  • As a result of displacement by a covered disaster or emergency, is enrolled in an elementary school or secondary school other than the school that the student was enrolled in, or was eligible to be enrolled in, on the date that is one week prior to the date that the major disaster or emergency was declared for the area.

Note that the definition includes students who, on the date a count is taken, are enrolled in a school in their original LEA but, because of the impact of one of the covered disasters or emergencies, are not in their original school. Please see the Emergency Impact Aid FAQs External link opens in new window or tab. (PDF) for more information on the definition of displaced student.

What types of activities may an LEA support with funds awarded under Assistance for Homeless Children and Youth program?

An LEA may use funds received under this program on any activity authorized under section 723 of the McKinney-Vento Act (see below).

Under section 723(d), an LEA may use funds awarded under this section for activities that carry out the purpose of the McKinney-Vento Act, including the following:

  1. Tutoring, supplemental instruction, and enriched educational services that are linked to the achievement of the same challenging State academic standards as the State establishes for other children and youth.
  2. Expedited evaluations of the strengths and needs of homeless children and youth, including needs and eligibility for programs and services (such as educational programs for gifted and talented students, children with disabilities, and English learners, services provided under title I of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 [20 U.S.C. 6301 et seq.] or similar State or local programs, programs in career and technical education, and school nutrition programs).
  3. Professional development and other activities for educators and specialized instructional support personnel that are designed to heighten the understanding and sensitivity of such personnel to the needs of homeless children and youth, the rights of such children and youths under this part, and the specific educational needs of runaway and homeless youths.
  4. Referral services to homeless children and youth for medical, dental, mental, and other health services.
  5. Assistance to defray the excess cost of transportation for students under section 722(g)(4)(A) of the McKinney-Vento Act, not otherwise provided through Federal, State, or local funding, where necessary to enable students to attend the school selected under section 722(g)(3) of this title.
  6. Developmentally appropriate early childhood education programs, not otherwise provided through Federal, State, or local funding, for preschool-aged homeless children.
  7. Services and assistance to attract, engage, and retain homeless children and youth, particularly homeless children and youth who are not enrolled in school, in public school programs and services provided to non-homeless children and youth.
  8. Before- and after-school, mentoring, and summer programs for homeless children and youth in which a teacher or other qualified individual provides tutoring, homework assistance, and supervision of educational activities.
  9. If necessary, the payment of fees and other costs associated with tracking, obtaining, and transferring records necessary to enroll homeless children and youth in school, including birth certificates, immunization or other required health records, academic records, guardianship records, and evaluations for special programs or services.
  10. Education and training to the parents and guardians of homeless children and youth about the rights of, and resources available to, such children and youth, and other activities designed to increase the meaningful involvement of parents and guardians of homeless children or youths in the education of such children or youth.
  11. The development of coordination between schools and agencies providing services to homeless children and youth, as described in section 722(g)(5) of the McKinney-Vento Act.
  12. Specialized instructional support services (including violence prevention counseling) and referrals for such services.
  13. Activities to address the particular needs of homeless children and youth that may arise from domestic violence and parental mental health or substance abuse problems.
  14. The adaptation of space and purchase of supplies for any non-school facilities made available under section 723(a)(2) to provide services under this subsection.
  15. School supplies, including those supplies to be distributed at shelters or temporary housing facilities, or other appropriate locations.
  16. Other extraordinary or emergency assistance needed to enable homeless children and youth to attend school and participate fully in school activities.

Application Process

Funding is provided to eligible LEAs that submit an application to the CDE on or before May 3, 2019, and is intended to assist with the cost of educating students who were displaced by a covered disaster or emergency during the 2017-18 school year and who were enrolled in public schools. Federal Funding Period: 09/19/2018 – 09/18/2020.


U.S. Department of Education Disaster Information Web page External link opens in new window or tab.

Emergency Impact Aid Statute

Questions:   Emergency Services Team |
Last Reviewed: Thursday, July 13, 2023