Students attending PA Leadership Charter School must be residents of Pennsylvania. However, homeless youth in Pennsylvania are also eligible for public education. This page provides information for homeless students.

Homeless Youth – The McKinney-Vento Act

The McKinney-Vento Education of Homeless Children and Youth Assistance Act is a federal law that ensures immediate enrollment and educational stability for homeless children and youth. McKinney-Vento provides federal funding to states for the purpose of supporting district programs that serve homeless students. PA Leadership Charter School works with families and agencies to provide a coordinated placement for the children while working with families to help them stabilize their situations.

Children and youth are eligible for services under the McKinney-Vento Act if they have been displaced from their homes and are living in a place that is not fixed, regular, or adequate, such as: 

  • Sharing the housing of others due to loss of housing, economic hardship, or similar reason 
  • In a place not designated as regular sleeping accommodation, such as a vehicle, park, hotel, or campground 
  • In a homeless or domestic violence shelter or transitional housing placement
  • Outside of his/her home as an unaccompanied youth
  • Awaiting foster care 
  • In any of the situations listed above as the child of a migrant family 

Download a copy of the McKinney-Vento Act from the Berks County Intermediate Unit

McKinney-Vento Act - Homeless Youth

Your Rights

Homeless Youth in PA are Eligible for PALCS

Children and youth experiencing homelessness have the right to: 

  • Continue their education in their current school, and receive transportation OR enroll immediately in the school where they are temporarily housed, even if lacking the paperwork normally required 
  • Participate in all applicable school programs, including supplemental services 
  • Receive free lunch 
  • Receive assistance with school-related expenses

Click here for a printable version of this information

Below are several web sites for additional information:

PA Education for Children and Youth Experiencing Homelessness (ECYEH) Program: Region 2 

PDE Directory for Liaisons and Shelters in the State (click on the word “Liaisons” or “Shelters” for each website)

PDE Homeless Education
PALCS Community Resource and Homeless Liaison:

Alicia Ryberg
Phone: 484-883-5448 or 610-701-3333 ext. 1473

For PALCS students eligible for services under the McKinney-Vento Act, additional support is available through our PALCS Community Closet and virtual PALCS Community Resource Center.