Identifying homeless students aim of legislative bills
The bill would allocate $300,000 for districts to provide assistance with rent, utilities and other costs instead of paying for transportation. It’s modeled after a housing project at Tacoma’s McCarver Elementary School. More than two years ago, the school partnered with the Tacoma Housing Authority to provide rental assistance for 42 homeless families with children at the school. Families are enrolled for five years and the amount of assistance they receive decreases by 20 percent each year. Michael Power of the Tacoma Housing Authority supervises the program. The school is overwhelmingly low-income, he said. About 95 percent of students receive free and reduced lunch. When the program first started, the school had a more than 170 percent turnover rate – meaning more than the total population of students were coming and going each year. Now, it’s down to 75 percent.
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