The purpose of the Tennessee Homeless Education Program is to develop educational programs that meet the unique needs of homeless children and youth. Because homeless children face many obstacles to an appropriate education, such as lack of transportation and resources, frequent school changes, loss of school records, and emotional stress, special programs are necessary.
The Homeless Education Program is designed to facilitate the enrollment, attendance and success of homeless children and youth in Tennessee schools. All school districts in Tennessee are required to provide needed services to homeless children. The department receives funding for the program through the federal McKinney-Vento Homeless Education Grant Program. The department distributes grants competitively to local education agencies (LEAs) that have developed programs that document effective collaboration among school districts and service providers to ensure that homeless children in that district receive needed services.