This project addresses the challenges confronting children living in Massachusetts homeless shelters, with particular attention to these youths’ education as well as the services that family shelters provide to support their academic achievement. With 1.35 million homeless children living in the United States each year (“How Many People Experience Homelessness?”, 2009), it is imperative that this population receives a quality education. Homelessness can result in academic disadvantage for many children, who benefit from a strong collaboration between the school system and a well-equipped shelter to meet their unique educational needs. This qualitative study involved interviews with ten shelter employees across Massachusetts. Analysis of the data indicated that the areas of greatest concern are the quality of parental involvement with the child, securing before and after school care, and accessing transportation. Many of the respondents noted that the availability of funding and staffing determined the shelters’ ability to adequately address these concerns. Policy-makers interested in resource allocation, homelessness advocates, and those who can offer volunteer services could utilize these findings.
Overcoming Educational Disadvantage: Shelter Initiatives for Homeless Children.
Undergraduate Review, 8, 26-32.
Available at: http://vc.bridgew.edu/undergrad_rev/vol8/iss1/7
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