21 May 2010

Conditions of homelessness matter

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The McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act provides students who are experiencing homelessness with the chance to maintain school stability, but some schools (and/or those who work within school systems) do not understand the implications that different “conditions of homelessness” have for families. That is, families that are “doubled-up” with others tend to have different needs than those who are in emergency shelter or those who are in longer-term transitional housing. There is, therefore, a need to develop understandings of homelessness in its diverse contexts and, in turn, schools must craft differentiated systems of response and intervention. Some of my recent work examines these issues and provides suggestions for school and community-based practitioners.

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