News and Updates

 

Parenting Through Homelessness and COVID-19: The Unfiltered Truth

On July 16, 2020, we connected with four mothers from New Jersey, Louisiana, Ohio, and Louisiana to share their unique parental perspectives. Through this discussion, we learned about some of the challenges facing parents and their children who are navigating homelessness during the COVID-19 era; the assistance they have found thus far, and the support they still need, but have not yet received. 

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Homelessness and the Pandemic: Five Youth Share Insights

On July 14, 2020, we connected virtually with five youth: four SchoolHouse Connection Young Leaders and a Youth Advisor for National Network for Youth. We listened as they reflected on their childhood experiences of homelessness and shared their experiences and challenges navigating college and homelessness in the wake of COVID-19. Here is the summary of the briefing.

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From the Field: Challenges & Strategies Supporting Children, Youth, and Families

Across the nation, school district homeless liaisons and early childhood programs are facing enormous and unprecedented challenges serving children, youth, and families experiencing homelessness during the pandemic. Yet liaisons also are coming up with creative strategies, drawing on community support, and forging ahead to meet constantly changing needs. In this video series, we sit down with liaisons and other providers from across the nation to share their experiences and tips as they face the new school year.

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Stable Homes, Stable Schools: The Imperative of Doing Things Differently

In this guest perspective, Charlotte Kinzley, McKinney-Vento liaison for Minneapolis Public Schools, describes the promising outcomes of Stable Homes Stable Schools, an initiative that supports eighteen schools with the highest rates of homelessness and provides access to ongoing rental assistance or one-time emergency assistance and wrap around services. “One critical and unique aspect of this housing initiative is that it focuses on the children in the family to prioritize those most in need and to measure success. Very rarely do we see this focus in the prioritization within our homeless response systems. The lack of focus on children’s needs is short-sighted when we know that homelessness is often generational, and therefore, we will not end homelessness without paying close attention to the needs of children in our community.”

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Our Names are Destiny, Lorinda, and Jose: Navigating Homelessness During COVID-19

On April 30th, SchoolHouse Connection hosted a webinar featuring three young leaders from our Youth Leadership and Scholarship Program who are navigating higher education during the coronavirus pandemic. During the webinar, the students shared their experiences, challenges, and advice for other students, higher education professionals, and service providers. This blog post has been repurposed from the webinar.

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Five Questions with Dr. Patricia Popp: Training is Critical to Support Students Experiencing Homelessness

“I was a teacher for students with disabilities when I entered the William & Mary doctoral program almost 25 years ago. I still see myself primarily as an educator. I truly believe that nothing we do in education makes a difference unless it affects a student. Since teachers have the most direct influence on our students, it is imperative that they be part of our work in homeless education.”

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Implementing State Law to Support College Students Experiencing Homelessness: Lessons from the First Tennessee Convening

In early March, prior to widespread school closures related to the coronavirus outbreak, SchoolHouse Connection (SHC) hosted a statewide convening on higher education and homelessness in Tennessee. We hosted three in-person convenings in Murfreesboro, Knoxville, and Memphis and live-streamed the convening. Together, we had over 100 people in attendance. The purpose of the convening was to help institutions implement HB 1000 / SB 763, a new state law that requires each post-secondary institution in Tennessee to designate a Homeless Student Liaison to assist students experiencing homelessness in applying for and receiving financial aid and available services.

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Supporting Our Students Amidst the Unknown: Evolving Lessons During COVID-19

Written by Jordyn Roark, Director of Youth Leadership and Scholarships at SchoolHouse Connection. "As a college student, I experienced a devastating hurricane, where most of the town I lived in was flooded. I remember this experience as being scary, filled with loss, and ultimately extremely traumatic -- especially on top of the trauma of my own homelessness. As I navigate my current professional role supporting students who are homeless during the Coronavirus outbreak, I have been reflecting on my experiences as a student." In this guest perspective, Jordyn shares strategies she has used to support our scholars and young leaders in the hopes that it will help others, as well as begin to build a foundation for best practices in the midst of a global pandemic. 

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Briya Public Charter School Goes the Extra Mile to Ensure All Students are Counted in the 2020 Census

By Johanna Ulseth, Student Services Coordinator and Homeless Liaison at Briya Public Charter School, Washington DC. As the 2020 United States Census is approaching, Briya and Mary’s Center have been working together to ensure that all of our students are informed of the process and empowered to participate. This blog details how Briya Public Charter Schools in Washington, DC are ensuring everyone gets counted in 2020.

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Five Questions with Jo Zimmer: Expanding Access to Host Homes for Unaccompanied Youth

Jo Zimmer, MPAE, owner of Beyond-the-Box Strategies, LLC, brings more than 20 years’ experience in safety net programs, most recently to the 28-county Rural Oregon Continuum of Care (ROCC), in her contracted role as Consultant/Coordinator for the Oregon team’s State Partnerships on Student Homelessness Project. By helping agencies and entities cooperatively address issues of housing, homelessness, and poverty in rural Oregon, she hopes to assist communities in doing “better” with less and reframe traditional thinking about funding and service delivery. In this blog, Jo tells us about host homes in Oregon and how they help promote high school graduation for students experiencing homelessness.

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