Student at Blacklick Elementary cafeteria



McKinney-Vento Homeless Education Assistance



If you are in need of assistance or information regarding your family’s eligibility under the McKinney-Vento Act, please contact the district’s Homeless Liaison.

GJPS Liaison for Homeless Education and Foster-Placed Youth
Jennifer Korn
District Student Services Coordinator
(614) 479-1306

State Coordinator for Homeless Education
Susannah Wayland
State Homeless Education Coordinator
(614) 387-7725


Authorized under Federal law through the McKinney-Vento Homeless Education Assistance Act, Gahanna-Jefferson Public Schools provides services to ensure that identified children and youth experiencing homelessness have access to a free and appropriate public education by removing barriers due to homelessness.

GJPS can assist with school selection and enrollment, school transportation, health and wellness checks, and by addressing barriers that affect school enrollment, attendance and full participation. Youth who qualify under the McKinney-Vento Act are individuals who, due to a loss of home, economic hardship, or similar reason, lack a fixed, regular, and adequate nighttime residence.

McKinney-Vento Definition of "Homeless Children and Youth"

 Individuals who lack a fixed, regular and and adequate nighttime residence, and includes:

  • Children and youths who are sharing the housing of other persons due to loss of housing, economic hardship, or a similar reason; are living in motels, hotels, or camping grounds due to the lack of alternative adequate accommodations; are living in emergency or transitional shelters; are abandoned in hospitals
  • Children and youth whose primary nighttime residence is not ordinarily used as a regular sleeping accommodation (e.g.. park benches, etc.)
  • Children and youth living in cars, parks, public spaces, abandoned buildings, substandard housing, bus or train stations
  • Migratory children and youth living in any of the above situations

Rights and Services

  • Immediate school enrollment and full participation in all school activities for eligible children, even when records normally required for enrollment are not available
  • The right of children and youth experiencing homelessness to remain in their school of origin (the school the student attended when permanently housed or the school in which the student was last enrolled, when feasible and in the child's or youth's best interest to do so.
  • Transportation to and from the school origin.
  • Access to programs and services, including special education services, preschool services, free school meals, Title I services, services for English language learners, vocational/technical education, gifted and talented services, and before and after-school care.
  • Rights and protections specifically for unaccompanied youth (youth who are not in the physical custody of a parent or guardian who is experiencing homelessness, including allowing them to be immediately enrolled without proof of guardianship.
  • The right to dispute an enrollment decision and for a child or youth to be admitted to the school in which enrollment is sought, pending the resolution of the dispute.