Governor Dan McKee and Commissioner Angélica Infante-Green today announced that the Rhode Island Department of Education (RIDE) has awarded more than $347,000 in McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act Education for Homeless Children and Youth subgrants to seven school districts this year to support students experiencing homelessness.

The school districts selected include Middletown, Newport, North Kingstown, Providence, Warwick, West Warwick, and Woonsocket.

More from a press release from Governor McKee’s Office;

“We must continue to work diligently to identify and support the unique needs of our most vulnerable students throughout Rhode Island,” said Governor Dan McKee. “This funding will aid in our school districts’ critical efforts to improve education for all students and families. I look forward to continuing to work with RIDE and local school leaders to ensure our students and families receive the resources and support they need.”

The subgrants, funded by a federal grant administered by the state, are renewable for up to three years. Each winning application had to demonstrate a well-developed project that facilitates the enrollment, attendance, and success of students experiencing homelessness. The projects had to show that they provide temporary, special, and supplementary services to meet the unique needs of these students.

“Housing insecurity, school instability, and the experience of homelessness can negatively impact our students, and it is critical our state addresses these challenges and ensures our students do not fall through the cracks,” said Chair of the Council on Elementary and Secondary Education Patti DiCenso. “The Elementary Council recognizes the toll the pandemic has had on historically underserved students, and we are grateful to our educators and communities working tirelessly to meet the needs of Rhode Island’s most vulnerable children.”

“Every single student deserves a safe place to call home, but unfortunately, that is not the case for some of our children. The COVID-19 pandemic exacerbated many families’ struggles, and it is our duty to prioritize equity and ensure access to fundamental educational resources,” said Commissioner Angélica Infante-Green. “As we continue to accelerate learning in the wake of the pandemic, we are pleased to offer these awards to districts so they may serve the unique needs of their most vulnerable students and families.”

Grants were initially awarded based on factors such as: 

  • The involvement of parents or guardians of students experiencing homelessness in the education of their children;
  • The extent to which students experiencing homelessness will be integrated within their district’s regular education program;
  • The extent to which services provided under this grant would be coordinated with other services available to students experiencing homelessness and their families;
  • Coordination with other local and state agencies that serve students experiencing homelessness;
  • And other measures indicative of a high-quality program, such as the extent to which the district will provide case management or related services to unaccompanied youth. 

Successful school districts and subgrant amounts are listed below:

  • Middletown – $50,000
  • Newport – $53,145
  • North Kingstown – $49,788
  • Providence – $50,000
  • Warwick – $50,000
  • West Warwick – $45,299.12
  • Woonsocket – $49,426.80

Total: $347,658.92 

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