Unaccompanied Youth & Children and Youth
in State Care or Custody
Unaccompanied youth are youth who are homeless; not in the physical custody of a parent/guardian; and not in the custody of a state agency. This definition includes youth living on the street, in the inadequate housing, denied housing by their families, those who have left home voluntarily, even when their parents want them to return home, and youth doubled up with their friends or relatives.
Also, in collaboration with the Department of Social Services, the Massachusetts Department of Education has determined that children and youth in state care or custody who have been placed out of their homes into temporary, transitional, or emergency living placements are awaiting foster care placement and therefore homeless.
Students in state care or custody who are awaiting foster care and therefore determined to be homeless are entitled to the same educational rights and services, including transportation, under the McKinney-Vento Homeless Education Assistance Act as any homeless child or youth in the care of their parent(s)/guardian(s).