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Educational Supports for Children and Youth

Children, Youth and Young Adults Whose Families are Homeless 

DHS, through its partnerships with network providers and contributors, has made great strides in meeting the educational needs of transient youth and children in homeless families. 

World Wide Web Icon Homeless Children’s Initiatives
The Allegheny Intermediate Unit’s Homeless Children’s Initiative is a federally funded program that ensures that homeless children and youth have the same access to public education as other children and youth in Allegheny County.  The initiative provides activities and services to homeless children and youth to help them succeed in school.

World Wide Web Icon After School and Summer Programs for Homeless Children and Youth 
The Homeless Children’s Education Fund (HCEF) has several learning centers and resource libraries available across Allegheny County where homeless children and youth can access after-school and summer programs to complement their education. The learning centers are equipped with computers, educational software, art supplies and other education-related materials.  Resource libraries are furnished with a variety of books at different reading levels and digital access to the Allegheny County Library Association.

Homeless Shelters and Other Housing Options
There are several homeless shelters located in Allegheny County that serve families with children and youth as well as unaccompanied youth. Seven DHS-contracted residential facilities are equipped with HCEF learning centers.  Many of the residential facilities that cannot accommodate complete learning centers house resource libraries to help meet the educational needs of homeless children and youth. 

Important Contacts

School District Liaisons to Assist Homeless Students 

World Wide Web Icon Web-based, searchable directory of liaisons  

Nicole Anderson, McKinney-Vento Regional Coordinator,
Homeless Children’s Initiative, Allegheny Intermediate Unit  
Phone: 412-394-5894
E-mail: nicole.anderson@aiu3.net   

Pittsburgh Public School Resources 

PDF Icon Pittsburgh Public Schools, McKinney-Vento 2012-13 School Year Student Service Request form 

PDF Icon Pittsburgh Public Schools Social Workers and Guidance Counselors 

If you are not able to have your question answered elsewhere, contact
Samantha Murphy, Resource Services Manager/Education Liaison
Allegheny County Department of Human Services
Phone: 412-350-2441
E-mail: samantha.murphy@alleghenycounty.us  

Related Resources

World Wide Web Icon The National Center for Homeless Education at the SERVE Center
Important information about the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act, including the definition of homelessness according to McKinney-Vento. 

World Wide Web Icon pdf.gif The Right of Homeless Children to Attend School in Pennsylvania
A publication of the Education Law Center that provides useful information about who is homeless, a homeless child’s right to enroll promptly in and attend school, disagreements about the school placement of a homeless child and links to additional resources on this topic. 

World Wide Web Icon Toolkit to Ensure School Success for Students Experiencing Homelessness
 Link to the Education Law Center’s website, providing enrollment guides and videos, fact sheets and training materials all related to the education of homeless children and youth.

Enrollment/School Stability and Attendance training
PowerPoint Enrollment/School Stability and Attendance
PDF Icon Enrollment/School Stability and Attendance  

Addresses the laws that empower children in care to remain in the same school even when their living placement changes. This is an overview of Pennsylvania’s enrollment laws which ensure the prompt enrollment of all students.

  • Laws that govern school stability
  • Homeless and foster children’s rights
  • Steps to take to ensure a child enrolls in school
  • What to do during disputes
  • Fostering Connections

Supporting documents  

For other related trainings 

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