The McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act defines homeless children and youth as individuals who lack a fixed, regular, and adequate nighttime residence; and are:
• Sharing the housing of other persons due to loss of housing, economic hardship, or similar reason;
• Living in motels, hotels, trailer parks, or camping grounds, due to the lack of alternative adequate accommodations;
• Living in emergency or transitional shelters, or are abandoned in hospitals;
• Living in a public or private place not designed for or ordinarily used as regular sleeping accommodation for human beings;
• Living in cars, parks, public spaces, abandoned buildings, substandard housing, bus or train stations, or similar settings; and
• Migratory children living in the above circumstances.
Texas Children and Youth Experiencing Homelessness
Under federal and state law, children and youth experiencing homelessness have a right to a free, appropriate public education (FAPE). The McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act
Albert H. Archuleta
For all McKinney-Vento questions please email
24 hours Help Line 1-800-989-6884
text 1-88-989-6884 or chat
Aunt Bertha is a free-to-use online platform that makes it easy for anyone in the US to find and apply for social services.
Here’s how it works. For any ZIP code in the United States, you’ll see at least 200 listings. Some areas have more programs than others, but we are rapidly expanding. So say you’re in Austin. You type in a ZIP code, and in a couple of seconds, it’s pulling in all of the national programs, state programs, county programs, city programs, and then programs that cover just your neighborhood.
If you type in “food pantry,” it pulls in the food pantry programs, organized by how close they are to you. You can filter for other variables—say “seniors.” As you drill in, you get the hours and location, and so on. You can also search by eligibility: put in a family size—let’s say I have two kids under 5 and I make $700 a month. What comes up is the Texas Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program—SNAP—what used to be called food stamps. I know, based on publicly available rules, that a family of this makeup would likely get somewhere around $458 a month in benefits. Or maybe you’re prescribed a prescription drug—say Prozac. You’re uninsured and you don’t have the money for it. It will bring up the Lilly Cares program. Eli Lilly, the manufacturer of Prozac, will give it to you for free if you apply.
The Texas Education for Homeless Children and Youth (TEHCY) Program
The Texas Education for Homeless Children and Youth (TEHCY) Program Infographic summarizes identification and graduation data for students experiencing homelessness enrolled in Texas public schools for 2018, and 2019 school years.