(105 ILCS 45/1-5)
As used in this Act:
"School of origin" means the school that the child attended when permanently
housed or the school in which the child was last enrolled.
"Parent" means the parent or guardian having legal or physical
custody of a child.
"Homeless person, child, or youth" includes, but is not limited to, any
of the following:
(1) An individual who lacks a fixed, regular, and
adequate nighttime place of abode.
(2) An individual who has a primary nighttime place
(A) a supervised publicly or privately operated
shelter designed to provide temporary living accommodations (including welfare hotels, congregate shelters, and transitional housing);
(B) an institution that provides a temporary
residence for individuals intended to be institutionalized; or
(C) a public or private place not designed for or
ordinarily used as a regular sleeping accommodation for human beings.
(Source: P.A. 88-634, eff. 1-1-95; 88-686, eff. 1-24-95
(105 ILCS 45/1-10)
Choice of schools.
When a child loses permanent housing and becomes a homeless person
within the meaning of Section 1-5, or when a homeless child changes his or her
temporary living arrangements, the parents or guardians of the homeless child
shall have the option of either:
(1) continuing the child's education in the school of
origin for as long as the child remains homeless or, if the child becomes permanently housed, until the end of the academic year during which the housing is acquired; or
(2) enrolling the child in any school that
nonhomeless students who live in the attendance area in which the child or youth is actually living are eligible to attend.
(Source: P.A. 102-558, eff. 8-20-21.)
(105 ILCS 45/1-15)
Transportation to school of origin.
Subject to the provisions
of Article 29 of the School Code, if a child becomes a homeless child or if a
homeless child changes his or her temporary living arrangements, and if the
homeless child's parents or guardians decide to continue the child's education
in the school of origin, the parents or guardians shall make a good faith
effort to provide or arrange for transportation to and from the school of
origin, including authorizing relatives, friends, or a program for homeless
persons to provide the child with transportation to and from the school of
origin. If transportation to and from the school of origin is not provided in
that manner, it shall be provided in the following manner:
(1) if the homeless child continues to live in the
school district in which the school of origin is located, the child's transportation to and from the school of origin shall be provided or arranged by the school district in which the school of origin is located consistent with the requirements of Article 29 of the School Code; and
(2) if the homeless child's living arrangements in
the school district of origin terminate and the child, though continuing his or her education in the school of origin, begins living in another school district, the school district of origin and the school district in which the homeless child is living shall meet to apportion the responsibility and costs for providing the child with transportation to and from the school of origin. If the school districts are unable to agree, the responsibility and costs for transportation shall be shared equally.
If a parent or guardian chooses to have the child attend the school of
origin, that parent or guardian, a teacher of the child, and the principal or
his or her designee from the school of origin may meet at the option of the
parent or the school to evaluate whether that travel is in the best interest of
the child's development and education as compared to the development and
education available in attending the school nearest the child's abode. The
meeting shall also include consideration of the best interests of the homeless
family at its current abode. A parent may bring a representative of his or her
choice to the meeting. The meeting shall be convened if travel time is longer
than one hour each way.
(Source: P.A. 88-634, eff. 1-1-95; 88-686, eff. 1-24-95.)
(105 ILCS 45/1-17)
(a) If a child is homeless or is at risk of becoming homeless, the school district may:
(1) provide rental or mortgage assistance in such
amount as will allow the child and his or her parent, his or her guardian, or the person who enrolled the child to remain permanently in their current living situation or obtain a new living situation;
(2) provide financial assistance with respect to
unpaid bills, loans, or other financial debts that results in housing being considered inadequate pursuant to Section 1-5 of this Act and the Federal McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act; or
(3) provide assistance under both items (1) and (2)
(b) In order to provide homeless prevention assistance under subsection (a) of this Section, a school district shall first make an attempt to provide such assistance through a homeless assistance agency that is part of the Federal McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act's continuum of care for the area in which the school district is located. If the attempts to secure assistance through the applicable continuum of care are unsuccessful, subject to the limitations specified in Section 29-5 of the School Code, transportation funds under Section 29-5 of the School Code may be used for those purposes.
(c) Prior to providing homeless prevention assistance pursuant to subsection (a) of this Section, a housing plan must first be approved in writing by the school district and the parent, guardian, or person who enrolled the child.
(d) For purposes of this Section:
"At risk of becoming homeless" means that documented evidence has been provided by the parent, guardian, or person who enrolled the child that shows that a living situation will, within 8 weeks, cease to become fixed, regular, and adequate and will result in the child becoming homeless within the definition of Section 1-5 of this Act and the Federal McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act. The documented evidence shall include, but need not be limited to: foreclosure notices, eviction notices, notices indicating that utilities will be shut off or discontinued, or written statements from the parent, guardian, or person who enrolled the child, supplemented by financial documentation, that indicate a loss of income that will prevent the maintenance of a permanent living situation.
"Person who enrolled the child" also means an unaccompanied youth.
(Source: P.A. 100-332, eff. 8-25-17.)
(105 ILCS 45/1-25)
Ombudspersons; dispute resolution; civil actions.
(a) Each regional superintendent of schools shall appoint an ombudsperson
who is fair and impartial and familiar with the educational rights and needs of homeless children to provide resource information and resolve disputes at schools within his or her jurisdiction relating to the rights of
homeless children under this Act. If a school denies a homeless child enrollment or transportation, it
shall immediately refer the child or his or her parent or guardian to the ombudsperson and provide the child or his or her parent or guardian with a written statement of the basis for the denial. The child
shall be admitted and transported to the school chosen by the parent or guardian until final resolution of the dispute. The ombudsperson shall
convene a meeting of all parties and attempt to resolve the dispute within 5
school days after receiving notice of the dispute, if possible.
(a-5) Whenever a child and his or her parent or guardian who initially share the housing of another person due to loss of housing, economic hardship, or a similar hardship continue to share the housing, a school district may, after the passage of 18 months and annually thereafter, conduct a review as to whether such hardship continues to exist. The district may, at the time of review, request information from the parent or guardian to reasonably establish the hardship, and sworn affidavits or declarations may be sought and provided. If, upon review, the district determines that the family no longer suffers such hardship, it may notify the family in writing and begin the process of dispute resolution as set forth in this Act. Any change required as a result of this review and determination shall be effective solely at the close of the school year. Any person who knowingly or willfully presents false information regarding the hardship of a child in any review under this subsection (a-5) shall be guilty of a Class C misdemeanor.
(b) Any party to a dispute under this Act may file a civil action in a
of competent jurisdiction to seek appropriate relief. In any civil action, a
party whose rights under this Act are found to have been violated shall be
entitled to recover reasonable attorney's fees and costs.
(c) If a dispute arises, the school district shall inform parents and
guardians of homeless children of the availability of the ombudsperson, sources
of low cost or free legal assistance, and other advocacy services in the
(Source: P.A. 94-235, eff. 7-14-05.)
(105 ILCS 45/1-50)
Education of Homeless Children and Youth State
(a) It is the purpose and intent of this Section to
establish a State grant program that parallels and supplements,
but operates independently of, the federal grant program
allocating funds for assistance under Subtitle B of Title VII
of the federal McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act (42 U.S.C. 11431
et seq.) and to establish a State grant program to support
school districts throughout this State in facilitating the
enrollment, attendance, and success of homeless children and
(b) Subject to appropriation, the State Board of Education
shall award competitive grants under an Education of Homeless
Children and Youth State Grant Program to applicant school
districts in accordance with this Section. Services provided by
school districts through the use of grant funds may not replace
the regular academic program and must be designed to expand
upon or improve services provided for homeless students as part
of the school's regular academic program.
(c) A school district that desires to receive a grant under
this Section shall submit an application to the State Board of
Education at such time, in such manner, and containing or
accompanied by such information as the State Board of Education
may reasonably require.
(d) Grants must be awarded on the basis of the need of the
school district for assistance under this Section and the
quality of the applications submitted.
(1) In determining need under this subsection (d),
the State Board of Education may consider the number of homeless children and youths enrolled in preschool, elementary school, and secondary school within the school district and shall consider the needs of such children and youths and the ability of the district to meet such needs. The State Board of Education may also consider the following:
(A) The extent to which the proposed use of funds
will facilitate the enrollment, retention, and educational success of homeless children and youths.
(B) The extent to which the application (i)
reflects coordination with other local and State agencies that serve homeless children and youths and (ii) describes how the applicant will meet the requirements of this Act and the federal McKinney-Vento Homeless Education Assistance Improvements Act of 2001.
(C) The extent to which the applicant exhibits
in the application and in current practice a commitment to education for all homeless children and youths.
(D) Such other criteria as the State Board
determines is appropriate.
(2) In determining the quality of applications under
this subsection (d), the State Board of Education shall consider the following:
(A) The applicant's assessment of needs and the
likelihood that the services presented in the application will meet such needs.
(B) The types, intensity, and coordination of the
(C) The involvement of parents or guardians of
homeless children or youths in the education of these children.
(D) The extent to which homeless children and
youths are effectively integrated within the regular education program.
(E) The quality of the applicant's evaluation
(F) The extent to which services provided will be
coordinated with other services available to homeless children and youths and their families.
(G) Such other measures as the State Board
considers indicative of high-quality services, such as the extent to which the school district will provide case management or related services to unaccompanied youths.
(e) Grants awarded under this Section shall be for terms
not to exceed 3 years, but are subject to annual appropriation for
the Education of Homeless Children and Youth State Grant Program. School districts shall use funds awarded under this Section only for those activities set forth in Section 723(d) of Subtitle B of Title VII of the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act of 1987 (42 U.S.C. 11433(d)).
(f) The State Board of Education may use up to 5% of the
funds appropriated for the purposes of this Section for
administrative costs, including the hiring of positions for the
implementation and administration of the grant program,
provided that if no appropriation is made to the State Board of Education
for a given fiscal year for the purposes of the grant program,
then the State Board of Education is not required to make any expenditures
in support of the program during that fiscal year.
(Source: P.A. 96-1229, eff. 1-1-11.)