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Homelessness, Youth and Families

Definition of Homelessness:

  • Lacking a fixed, regular, and adequate nighttime residence
  • Sharing housing due to loss of housing and/or economic hardship (temporary)
  • Living in a public space or private space not designated for ordinarily use as a regular sleeping accommodations for human beings
  • Living in motels, hotels, trailer parks, or campgrounds
  • Living in emergency or transitional shelters
  • Living in cars, parks, public spaces, abandoned buildings, or similar settings
  • Migratory children living in any of these circumstances


For questions about enrolling in school or for assistance with school enrollment, contact:

Lori Owens 

Homeless and Foster Youth Liaison 

San Rafael City Schools




You are guaranteed enrollment in school by the federal McKinney-Vento Act and California state law. Your child or children have the right to:

  • Immediate enrollment in the school they last attended (school of origin) or the local school where you are currently staying, even if you do not have all the documents normally required at the time of enrollment.
  • Continue to attend their school of origin, if requested by you and it is in the best interest.
  • Receive transportation to and from their school of origin, the same special programs and services, if needed, as provided to all other children, including free meals and Title I.
  • Receive the full protections and services provided under all federal and state laws, as it relates to homeless children, youth, and their families.

You can enroll in school immediately even without the documents normally required for enrollment, such as:

• Proof of residency

• Immunization records or other required health records

• School records

• Legal guardianship papers