Question

Were you aware that 2/3 of adults experiencing homelessness have not received a high school diploma or completed a GED?

Homeless Families Who Are Not in Shelters: Barriers to Early Childhood Services

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Most of the literature on homeless children in families is based on analyses of children in shelters or homeless children already in public education systems. As a result, little is known about families with young children who qualify as homeless under the U.S. Department of Education (ED) definition, but do not reside in homeless shelters or transitional housing, and do not receive public education or participate in Head Start/Early Head Start programs.

The Administration for Children and Families recently released findings from an exploratory project that sheds light on the experiences of homeless families who are not living in shelters or connected with education. These families are particularly at risk since they do not have access to the support services provided by the shelter, early learning or educational systems. Such isolation may exacerbate the already negative impacts homelessness has on early childhood development, which is well-documented in the literature.

Key findings from this small case study identify the severity of challenges faced by these families. The project highlights risk factors children are exposed to in their temporary living arrangements, and the major barriers their parents encounter when trying to access early childhood care and education settings.

Read the report.

Read other ACF materials on young children experiencing homelessness.

Read NAEHCY's Early Childhood Education page.

NAEHCY 2017 Conference
Chicago, IL
October 28-31, 2017
The Every Student Succeeds Act of 2015
Homeless Students in ESEA Reauthorization
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