January 31, 2011 in Uncategorized
“The number of homeless children and youth identified in public schools has increased for the second year in a row, and by 41% over the past two school years”.Â Source – Department of Education.
Often we donâ€™t look at how education has been impacted by homelessness.Â Since our economic downturn, schools have seen a dramatic increase in number of homeless children and youth.Â Some families have walked away from their older children leaving them to coach surf and some have transcended to living in their cars or areas not suited for habitation. The influx of homelessness in the school system has caused a ripple of waves forcing the schools to pull out their surf boards for the ride.
Like faith institutions who have become the first responders to homelessness, an expectation has been created for schools to become one as well.Â Â With the demand for basic needs, such as, food, shoes, clothing, and school supplies, schools are finding how difficult it is to find support and how resource rich they need to become to help its homeless students and families. Â In addition to meeting basic needs, schools are finding ways to offer more homeless services by increasing academic support, transportation assistance, and outreach to get homeless students and families engaged in these services.
Unfortunately a report by the Department of Education showed that there has been a high unprecedented increase in child and youth homelessness.Â The study identified that children and youth in public schools have increased for a second year in a row, and by 41% over the past two years.Â Additionally, the number of homeless children and youth from pre-kindergarten to 12th grade are now at a startling 956,914.
It is not rock science to know that homelessness jeopardizes a youthâ€™s educational success.Â Education is the road out of poverty and is one the best homeless prevention tools.Â Â However, homeless youth and unaccompanied youth are faced with the challenges of finding housing, transportation, and survival needs.
Our schools are a safe haven for homeless children and youth.Â They provide stability and safety.Â They are looking for a helping hand to assist its homeless population because government funding isnâ€™t enough.Â Without support, they will continue to surf the wave of needs.
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