Friday, March 7, 2014

The FAFSA & Homeless Youth

Like many school counselors out there, I wear many hats. One of which is serving as the district "McKinney-Vento Homeless Liaison." I take this duty pretty seriously & work hard to educate administration, faculty, staff etc. about the reality of complying with the law & caring for our students that qualify for services.

This year, for the first time, I have an overage of seniors that are in transitional housing & college bound. 

Throughout the last couple of years these students have been exposed to our mandatory career exploration, college planning & college funding lessons & all of them visited the office for help with their FAFSA's.

One thing I didn't anticipate, which prompted this post, was the follow up documentation to verify McKinney-Vento status.

One of my students caught me in the hall this morning & told me his college needed more information about his McKinney-Vento status. The school had sent him a form that he had to complete & return with supporting documentation from me.

I had no idea what to send so I logged into to our State information system & quickly printed his profile data, which noted his homeless & unaccompanied youth status, but I didn't think that would be enough. After a quick Google search I realized that most colleges had their own verification forms, I was just unlucky in that this particular college did not.

I quickly adapted the form to fit my needs & saved it to my Forms folder for future use. Check it out hereI am sharing a link to the form in case you get into the same jam & want something that looks more professional than a screen shot.

What do you use to verify homeless status for college bound students?

Please share your resources & wisdom in the comments.

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