Augusta County Public Schools is committed to the education of homeless children and youth.

    If you have questions or are experiencing unstable housing, please contact your School Social Worker or District McKinney-Vento Liaison, Ashley Whitesel, at 540-245-5134.

    Project Hope  
    The McKinney-Vento Homeless Education Assistance Act of 2001 (Every Child Succeeds Act-ESSA), helps ensure equal educational access for homeless children and youth who are defined as:
    A.    Lacking a fixed, regular and adequate nighttime residence. This includes:
    -sharing the housing of other persons due to loss of housing, economic hardship, or a similar reason
    -living in motels, hotels, trailer parks, or camping grounds due to lack of alternative adequate accommodations
    -living in emergency or transitional shelters
    -being abandoned in hospitals 
    B.    Having a primary nighttime residence that is a public or private place not designed for, or ordinarily used as, regular sleeping accommodation for human beings.
    C.    Living in cars, parks, public spaces, abandoned buildings, substandard housing, bus or train stations, or similar settings. 
    D.    Migratory children who qualify as homeless due to living in circumstances listed above.
    E.    Unaccompanied youth, not in the physical custody of a parent or guardian.

    **Children and youth experiencing homelessness are identified and enrolled immediately in school, regardless of custody issues, availability of previous school records, medical/immunization records, proof of residency, or other documentation.  

    ** This does NOT eliminate the enrollment requirements; it merely allows enrollment while records are secured.**
    School Selection

    Augusta County Schools will either continue the homeless student's education in the school of origin or enroll the student in the school zone they are currently residing in.  Preference will be giving to enrolling the student in the school of origin, unless it is not in the child’s best interest or feasible.

    The student's right to attend the school of origin extends for the duration of homelessness.  Additionally, if the student becomes permanently housed during the academic year, he or she is entitled to stay in the school of origin for the remainder of the academic year.  However, transportation will not be provided.

    If Augusta County Schools chooses to enroll the student in a school other than the school of origin or the school requested by the parent or guardian, the parent/guardian must be given written notice explaining the rationale for the decision and their right to appeal under the enrollment dispute resolution process.

    *The terms enroll and enrollment include attending classes as well as full participation in school activities.

    Transportation           Bus

    Augusta County Schools will ensure that transportation is provided, at the request of the parent or guardian (or in the case of an unaccompanied youth, the liaison), to and from the school of origin.

    **This may take up to 5 business days to begin** 

    If the homeless student begins living in an area served by a school division other than Augusta County Schools, though continuing his or her education at the school of origin, both school divisions will agree upon a method to apportion responsibility and costs for transporting the child to the school of origin.  If no agreement can be reached, the responsibility and cost must be share equally.

    Segregation and Discrimination

    Homelessness alone is not sufficient reason to separate students from the mainstream school environment.  Augusta County Schools shall adopt and review policies and procedures to ensure that homeless children and youth are not segregated or stigmatized on the basis of their status as homeless, and that these students are provided educational services comparable to those received by other students in the school.

    Please contact your School Social Worker with any questions. Thank you for your assistance with this process.