Homeless and Community Resources

Palisades School District Homeless Liaison

Mr. Lou deFonteny, Director of Student Services
Contact Information:
phone# 610-847-5131 ext. 4009
email address:  [email protected]

Homeless Services

McKinney Vento Homeless Assistance Act

McKinney Vento Homeless Assistance Act (McKinney-Vento Act) is a Federal Law designed to address the needs of homeless children and ensure educational stability. Under this Act, school districts are responsible to support students/families through identification, connection to resources, and ensuring educational stability.

Homeless Definition: When a family experiences a loss of housing related to factors that create instability in housing forcing them to live in motels, hotels, camping grounds, in cars and other related insufficient living conditions (lack of regular fixed and adequate sleeping accommodations), they are considered homeless. Homeless youth who are not in the care of their parents or legal guardian and are not supported by a resident of a district who completes a 1302 affidavit thereby agreeing to support the student gratis (without compensation),  are designated Unaccompanied and also meet the definition of homelessness. 

Homeless Identification: School Districts begin identification of homeless students during the enrollment process. Should a parent, guardian or student believe they meet the definition to be considered Homeless under the McKinney Vento act, they should notify the registrar or school counselor.  The registrar or school counselor will notify the Homeless Liaison who will reach out to support the family/student.

District Responsibilities: The LEA ensures students, families, and unaccompanied youth are aware of their McKinney-Vento rights and available program services. The LEA ensures all shelters and community homeless service providers are aware of the transportation mandate made available to those students experiencing homelessness. The LEA allows students to remain in their school of origin should a dispute arise. The LEA ensures that internal policies and/or procedures do not create or exacerbate educational barriers to the identification, enrollment and retention of students experiencing homelessness. The LEA ensures the timely and accurate identification of students experiencing homelessness. The LEA ensures the immediate enrollment of students experiencing homelessness. The LEA ensures assisting unaccompanied homeless youth with enrollment, school placement decisions, and academic supports. The LEA addresses child/family referrals to appropriate health care, dental services, and other medical services. The LEA ensures families experiencing homelessness have access to district-wide parent involvement activities and initiatives. The LEA ensures collaboration, communication and service coordination between the school, the previous school and community agencies to meet the needs of students/families experiencing homelessness.

Homeless Dispute Process: Anytime there is a disagreement that may arise regarding the education of homeless students including school placement, the district will first attempt to resolve the concern with the family/student. The district may also consult with the Bucks County Intermediate Unit Region 8 Liaison to resolve disputes.If the dispute cannot be resolved, a complaint may be filed with the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE). The district may also notify the family, in writing, that the PDE is being consulted to assist in the homeless determination. A written explanation of the district’s decision will be provided allowing the family to dispute the determination. Throughout the dispute process, education will continue in the school last attended or in the district in which they are seeking enrollment. Access to education and services continue during the dispute process.

McKinney Vento Poster