Expanding Early Care and Education for Homeless Children
Ensuring the early learning and development of our country's youngest children is essential to the work of the Administration for Children and Families (ACF). Supporting the well-being of these young children and their families is an urgent task and one that is critical to improving the long-term educational outcomes of children nationwide.
Several federal policies and programs are in place to strengthen the ability of early care and education (ECE) providers to serve young children experiencing homelessness. Whether you are in a Head Start program, early childhood program, or work at the state level on early childhood systems and services, the resources listed below will assist you in ensuring that these young children are prioritized for services that support their learning and development.
- Promising Practices for Children Experiencing Homelessness: A Look at Two States resource paper providing a fresh look at the effects of homelessness on young children, and efforts in Massachusetts and Oregon to implement innovative policies to improve early childhood outcomes for young children experiencing homelessness
- Definitions of Homelessness for Federal Program Serving Children, Youth, and Families chart illustrating the similarities and differences of the two major federal definitions of homelessness in use by the Department of Education in Subtitle VII-B of the McKinney-Vento Act, and the Housing and Urban Development (HUD) in Section 103 of Subtitle I of the McKinney-Vento Act.
- Policies and Procedures to Increase Access to ECE Services for Homeless Children and Families
- Strategies for increasing ECE Services for Homeless Children
- Early Childhood and Family Homelessness Resource List
- Issue Brief on Early Care and Education for Young Children Experiencing Homelessness
- Building Partnerships to Address Family Homelessness resource paper highlighting efforts by local Head Start and Early Head Start programs to connect with public housing associations, emergency shelter providers, local education agencies, and other community service providers
View additional materials:
- Guide to developmental and behavioral screening for housing and shelter providers (Released March 2014)
- Working Together: Increasing Early Childhood Education Services for Homeless Children (A collaborative webinar by ACF and HUD)
- Home Visiting and Homeless Service Systems (Webinar for Home Visiting grantees held in March 2014)
- Related blogs from The Family Room:
Visit the Early Childhood Learning and Knowledge Center (ECLKC) for additional resources for homeless children and their families.