Education of Homeless Children and Youth
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Contact Us:

For all Washington State technical assistance questions and inquiries:

Information outside of Washington State:
  All 50 State Coordinators



For more information about
Education of Homeless Children and Youth in Washington State only:

  Melinda Dyer
  Program Supervisor

  Ella DeVerse
  Program Specialist

  Cindi Wiek
  Administrative Assistant


For more information about
the Washington State Homeless Student Stability Program:

  Cara Patrick
  Program Supervisor



Education of Homeless Children and Youth

Homeless Student Stability Program

In 2016 the Legislature passed the Homeless Student Stability and Opportunity Gap Act, to amend state laws related to improving educational outcomes for homeless students through increased identification services, in-school supports, and housing stability. The resulting Homeless Student Stability Program at OSPI complements the Federal McKinney-Vento program, providing additional support and resources for districts.

State Grants

Pending the availability of 2017-18 State operating funds, new Homeless Student Stability Program (HSSP) grants will be awarded in July 2017.

The over-arching goal of the HSSP is to improve educational outcomes for homeless students through increased:

  • Identification services.
  • In-school guidance supports.
  • Housing stability.

HSSP includes two funding mechanisms:

  • Grants from OSPI to build homeless education program capacity at school districts.
  • Grants from Commerce to support Homeless Housing Partnerships (HHP) between school districts and housing entities.

This joint state funding opportunity offers competitive grants to high-need school districts to build capacity and ensure students experiencing homelessness:

  • Continue attending the same school.
  • Maintain housing stability.
  • Improve academic achievement.

NOTE: All awards are pending the availability of 2017-18 state operating funds.

  • OSPI awards will not exceed $125,000 per school district/consortium.
  • Commerce awards will not exceed $500,000 per school district/consortium.

Submit all applications through iGrants by 4 p.m., Monday, June 5, 2017.

View a brief presentation about the grant opportunity.

Commerce Grant Q&A - May 19, 2017

2016-17 Grantees (xlsx).

Informed Consent for Health Care

Through RCW 28A.320.147, school nurses, school counselors, or homeless student liaisons are authorized to provide consent for health care for unaccompanied homeless students. In situations where informed consent is necessary due to the age of the student, the authorized school personnel may provide that consent for “nonemergency outpatient primary care services, including physical examinations, vision examinations and eyeglasses, dental examinations, hearing examinations, and hearing aids, immunizations, treatments for illnesses and conditions, and routine follow-up care customarily provided by a health care provider in an outpatient setting, excluding elective surgeries.” Health services may also include outpatient treatment for mental health and substance abuse.

When service is provided, the school district personnel authorizing the care must give the provider written notice of exemption from liability for care or payment of care, for both themselves and the employing school.

Sample Informed Consent for Health Care Notification Form

Building Liaison

Beginning in 2016, school districts that have identified more than ten unaccompanied homeless youth must establish building-level contacts at all secondary schools – middle schools, junior high and high schools. These building homeless liaisons must be appointed by the principal, and trained by the district’s homeless liaison. The primary responsibility of the building liaison is to identify homeless and unaccompanied youth and connect them to the district homeless student liaison.

Building Liaison List

For more information, please contact:
Cara Patrick
Program Supervisor
Homeless Student Stability
Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI)
Office: 360-725-6505 


   Updated 5/24/2017

Old Capitol Building, PO Box 47200, 600 Washington St. S.E., Olympia, WA  98504-7200  360-725-6000  TTY 360-664-3631
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