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Point In Time Count

December 8, 2016

The Point-in-Time (PIT) count is an annual count of people experiencing homelessness on a single night in the last 10 days in January. The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) requires its Continuum of Care (CoC) grantees to conduct an annual count of sheltered homeless persons. CoCs also must conduct a count of unsheltered homeless persons every other year (odd numbered years). Each count is planned, coordinated, and carried out locally by service providers and trained volunteers.While many CoCs complete their count of unsheltered persons on the night designated for the count, given the additional challenges associated with counting people experiencing unsheltered homelessness, some CoCs conduct their unsheltered count over the seven days following the night of the count. This "post-night" approach may be particularly useful for counting unsheltered families and youth with young children.

This report is intended to help states refine their capacity to use existing administrative data1 from early childhood (EC) programs to improve services for young children and families. Linking data collected across early childhood programs can help program leaders and policymakers better understand the needs of the children and families these programs serve as well as support continuous program improvement, innovation, and research. Integrated early childhood data can help to answer important questions related to program access, participation, quality, and their association with child outcomes. These answers can, in turn, inform how federal and state funds support young children’s early learning, health, and development across a range of programs and services; impact resource allocation decisions; allow for examination of patterns in service use; identify areas for quality improvement and innovation; and improve the coordination of service delivery across systems at both the state and local levels.