The number of homeless students in Kern is expected to increase due to the COVID-19 pandemic, according to the Kern County Superintendent of Schools.
Prior to the pandemic, Kern County had the ninth highest homelessness student population among the state’s 58 counties and the highest among Central Valley counties, according to KCSOS’s McKinney Homeless Education Program.
“The student homelessness crisis in Kern County will continue to rise as families continue to struggle to make ends meet after being laid off,” said KCSOS in a news release. “The situation may worsen as activists have predicted that family homelessness will surge.”
As the next upcoming school year nears, this can be potentially damaging to student learning.
The news release shares, “that during a single year, 97 percent of homeless students move up to three times and 40 percent attend two different schools. This disruption can result in four to six months of learning loss, delays in enrollment, lost education records, and loss of high school credits.”
In response to the negative impacts that the pandemic may have to the education of youth, the KCSOS’s McKinney Vento Homeless Education program has expanded its outreach efforts. It will help local school districts in the identification process of homeless students and make those that are identified to be homeless become aware of the resources available to them.
If you or someone you know has inadequate housing caused by economic hardship you are urged to complete/recommend to complete an online referral (http://bit.ly/ReferKernMV) or contact Rolando Hernandez, education liaison, at (661) 636-4900 or firstname.lastname@example.org.