The federal McKinney-Vento Act and New York Education Law Section 3209 provide important school selection and enrollment protections to preschool-12 students in temporary housing. Parents or unaccompanied youth in temporary housing may have up to three choices to enroll in school. They can choose:
  1. The school attended when they were last permanently housed, or
  2. The school last attended, even if the student was temporarily housed during that time, or
  3. The local school where the student is currently temporarily housed.
As soon as a parent or unaccompanied youth makes a school selection decision, the students have the right to immediate enrollment, even if they are missing documents usually required to enroll. Students also have the right to maintain enrollment for the rest of the academic year in which they find permanent housing, even if the new housing is outside of the school district where they attend school. In New York State, students may continue in the same school for an additional year if that year is the student's terminal year in the school (for example, 12th grade).
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