The McKinney-­Vento Act is a federal law developed to ensure immediate enrollment and educational stability for homeless children and youth. Every homeless youth has access to the same free, appropriate public education, including preschool education, as other children and youth. The law seeks to remove any barriers created by other laws, regulations, practices, and policies that might keep children experiencing homelessness from receiving the same educational experience. Students who lack a fixed, regular, and adequate nighttime residence are eligible for services guaranteed under the McKinney­Vento Act.

  • This provision includes children and youth who are:

    • Sharing the housing of other persons due to loss of housing, economic hardship, or similar reason ("doubled­up")

    • Living in motels, hotels, trailer parks, or camping grounds due to the lack of alternative accommodations

    • Living in emergency or transitional shelters

    • Abandoned in hospitals

    • Using a public or private place not designed for or ordinarily used as a regular sleeping accommodation as a primary nighttime residence

    • Living in cars, parks, public spaces, abandoned buildings, substandard housing, bus/train stations, or similar settings.


  • Any services provided to students meeting the above criteria are also available to refugee or migratory children and youth in any of the above situations as well as youth not in the custody of any parent or guardian (unaccompanied youth).


  • Every Local Education Agency (LEA) is required by law to designate a local liaison for children and youth experiencing homelessness. District 5 has a Homeless Liaison (Leanette Lovell) who serves as one of the primary contacts between homeless families and school staff along with other service providers. The liaison works to make sure that homeless children and youth enroll in school and have the opportunity to succeed academically. The liaison ensures that students' rights are protected and that the district fulfills its responsibilities under the McKinney­-Vento Act. Please contact the Homeless Liaison for more information on services provided by District 5:


Allyson Ryan

School Social Worker

Carrier Mills Grade School

618-994-2413 ext. 310

Melissa Kuhlmann

HS Assistant Principal

Carrier Mills High School

618-994-2392 ext. 203