Evictions, natural disasters, pandemic-related job loss, and increased family stress have the potential to cause unprecedented levels of child, youth, and family homelessness this school year. Here, we break down five facts every educator needs to know about child and youth homelessness and action steps for supporting students as they return to the classroom. For more awareness and training resources, click here.

1. Homelessness is in Your School And School District, Even If You Can’t See It.

Family and youth homelessness is often hidden. Many communities lack shelters for families and youth, and families and youth may fear shelter — especially during COVID-19. For these reasons, homeless families and youth are much more likely to…


Barbara Duffield, Executive Director of SchoolHouse Connection, was invited to participate in a Congressional roundtable, which is part of the House Rules Committee series on ending hunger in America to address how schools address homelessness — broadly — and how issues like homelessness cannot be addressed in silos from issues like hunger. Below is the oral testimony, and to see the written testimony, click here.

Chairman McGovern, Ranking Member Cole, and members of the Committee. Thank you for the opportunity to discuss the role of schools in ending hunger and improving nutrition. …


Hidden Homelessness: Why child, youth, and family homelessness is the crisis we cannot ignore is a series developed by SchoolHouse Connection featuring stories and voices that highlight the long-term impacts of child, youth, and family homelessness. From this first-person storytelling, we learn the ways homelessness underlies and intersects with other critical issues and therefore why this crisis requires specific, urgent, meaningful action from policymakers.

Jill Merolla is a Supervisor of Community Outreach and Grant Development and Homeless Liaison for the Warren City Schools, in a small, high poverty urban setting in northeastern Ohio. She’s worked in the district for 34…


Hidden Homelessness: Why child, youth, and family homelessness is the crisis we cannot ignore is a series developed by SchoolHouse Connection featuring stories and voices that highlight the long-term impacts of child, youth, and family homelessness. From this first-person storytelling, we learn the ways homelessness underlies and intersects with other critical issues and therefore why this crisis requires specific, urgent, meaningful action from policymakers.

Christina Ramos is a Professional Social Services Liaison for Homeless and Unaccompanied Youth at Conroe Independent School District in Montgomery County, Texas — a role created by the McKinney-Vento Act, a United States federal law providing…


This story originally appeared on HomeRoom, the official blog of the U.S. Department of Education.

Hidden Homelessness: Why child, youth, and family homelessness is the crisis we cannot ignore is a series developed by SchoolHouse Connection featuring stories and voices that highlight the long-term impacts of child, youth, and family homelessness. From this first-person storytelling, we learn the ways homelessness underlies and intersects with other critical issues and therefore why this crisis requires specific, urgent, meaningful action from policymakers.

In this essay, SchoolHouse Connection Youth Scholar Jahnee S. bravely speaks to the impact her experiences of homelessness throughout her youth…


Hidden Homelessness: Why child, youth, and family homelessness is the crisis we cannot ignore is a series developed by SchoolHouse Connection featuring stories and voices that highlight the long-term impacts of child, youth, and family homelessness. From this first-person storytelling, we learn the ways homelessness underlies and intersects with other critical issues and therefore why this crisis requires specific, urgent, meaningful action from policymakers.

Eric P.* is 19 years old, based in Texas, navigating his senior year of high school amid a pandemic — and as if that isn’t challenging enough, he is also an Unaccompanied Homeless Youth staying with…


Hidden Homelessness: Why child, youth, and family homelessness is the crisis we cannot ignore is a series developed by SchoolHouse Connection featuring stories and voices that highlight the long-term impacts of child, youth, and family homelessness. From this first-person storytelling, we learn the ways homelessness underlies and intersects with other critical issues and therefore why this crisis requires specific, urgent, meaningful action from policymakers.

Megan Reikowski is an English Language & Federal Programs Coordinator for Lakeville Area Schools in Lakeville, Minnesota. …


Written By Brandon Plowman, SHC Young Leader

When I’m watching or reading queer media, I can be sure that at least one, and sometimes multiple, of these things will happen:

1. One or more LGBTQ+ characters will end up being abused or dead.

2. A transgender woman will be portrayed as a perverted serial killer.

3. An LGBTQ+ teenager will be kicked out of their home, and they will become homeless.

The impact that Hollywood and advertising agencies have on the way queer people’s lives are interpreted by non-queer people is far-reaching, and decades of inaccurate and incomplete representation of…


Across the country, local educational agencies (LEAs) are beginning to reopen school buildings. Whether attending school fully online, fully in-person, or some hybrid blend of the two, students experiencing homelessness have new and dire needs. Many are struggling with instructional loss and mental health challenges due to months of distance learning and social isolation. Others simply have disappeared from school: survey data suggest that an estimated 420,000 fewer children and youth experiencing homelessness have been identified and enrolled by schools this school year. …


Without improvements to the current COVID-19 relief bill moving through the House, very little aid, if any, is likely to reach the 1.5 million students experiencing homelessness. The education package contains nearly $130 billion for K-12 education, with a press release declaring that the bill was a “clear message” to the American people that help was on the way. Regrettably, the message to students experiencing homelessness, clearly, is that help is not on the way.

The bill does call on states and local educational agencies to reserve small portions of their funds to address the “disproportionate impact of the coronavirus”…

SchoolHouse in Session

This is hub of expertise and stories to drive solutions around children, youth, and family homelessness. It is a project of SchoolHouse Connection.

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