Homeless children and youth report that school is a home to them – a place where they see the same faces, sit in the same seat, and can put their hearts and minds into pursuits that ease their daily troubles. In school, students gain the skills and support needed to avoid poverty and homelessness as adults.

College Access and Success for Students Experiencing Homelessness: A Toolkit for Educators and Service Providers

Setting the Context

The past several years have seen a heightened interest in the issue of access to higher education for students experiencing homelessness. This heightened interest is due, at least in part, to the September 2007 passing of the College Cost Reduction and Access Act, including its provisions related to unaccompanied homeless youth. As interest in the issue increased, the National Association for the Education of Homeless Children and Youth (NAEHCY) realized the need for a resource that would provide information on a variety of topics related to college access and success for homeless youth.

The Toolkit

NAEHCY’s College Access and Success for Students Experiencing Homelessness: A Toolkit for Educators and Service Providers serves as a comprehensive resource on the issue of higher education access and success for homeless students, including information on:

  • Understanding homeless students: Who are homeless students? How can homeless students be identified? What educational barriers do these students face?
  • Assisting homeless students in choosing a school: What information and resources are available to homeless students to help them research and choose an institution of higher education that is right for them?
  • Helping homeless students pay for application-related expenses: What is available in terms of waivers for Advanced Placement (AP) test fees, college entrance exam (ACT and SAT) fees, and college application fees?
  • Assisting homeless students in finding financial aid and scholarships for school: How should homeless students fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)? Are there scholarships available for homeless students?
  • Helping homeless students succeed in college: What supports are available to homeless students to help them make the grade and reach graduation?

The toolkit provides local homeless education liaisons, State Coordinators for Homeless Education, school counselors, college admission counselors, college financial aid administrators, and youth shelters and other service providers with the resources they need to understand the options and supports available for college-bound homeless youth and assist these youth in accessing them.

Download the toolkit.

NAEHCY 2018 Conference
Anaheim, CA
October 27-30, 2018
The Every Student Succeeds Act of 2015
Homeless Students in ESEA Reauthorization
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