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Homeless Services

Each school district must designate a staff person as the district’s specialist for homeless children and youth.  The current homeless specialist for Linn-Mar Community School District is Katie Dorsey.

Katie Dorsey

Family Resource Specialist

319-730- 3633

katie.dorsey@linnmar.k12.ia.us

McKinney-Vento Homeless Education Act:

McKinney-Vento Homeless Education Assistance Act is a federal law that ensures immediate enrollment and education stability for homeless children and youth.  The term “homeless children and youth” means individuals who lack a fixed, regular, and adequate nighttime residence due to loss of housing, economic hardship, or similar reason.  Students who are homeless are not required to provide proof of residency before enrolling.

Under the McKinney-Vento Act, children in homeless situations have the right to:

  • Go to school, no matter where they live or how long they have lived there;
  • Attend either the local school or the school of origin, if this is in their best interest; the school of origin is the school the child attended when he/she was permanently housed, or the school in which the child was last enrolled;
  • Receive transportation to and from the school of origin;
  • Enroll in school immediately, even if missing records and documents normally required for enrollment such as a birth certificate, proof of residence, previous school records, or immunization/medical records;
  • Enroll, attend classes, and participate fully in all school activities while the school arranges for transfer of records;
  • Have access to the same programs and services that are available to all other students including transportation and supplemental educational services;
  • Have access to free school meals/lunch programs;
  • Attend school with children not experiencing homelessness; segregation based on a student’s status as homeless is prohibited

National Toll Free Homeless Education Helpline Number: 1-800-308-2145

Homeless Informational Links:

National Association for the Education of Homeless Children and Youth (NAEHCY)

National Center for Homeless Education

Linn County Community Services & Resources