Homeless families in our state

poverty is (2)

According to the Seattle Times:

State had more than 27K homeless students last year

State education officials say the number of homeless students continues to rise.

More than 27,000 students were reported as homeless in the 2011-12 school year. That number is up about 5 percent from 2010-11 and up nearly 47 percent from the beginning of the recession.

Districts blame the still struggling job market, the closing of factories and cuts in funding for programs that prevent homelessness for the growing problem in Washington public schools

Districts also say that better reporting and more awareness have led to more accurate numbers. According to the federal law on homeless students, a student is considered homeless if he or she doesn’t have a fixed, regular and adequate nighttime residence. That includes living in a shelter, a car or another kind of temporary housing.

27,000 YOUTH. The number is horrifying.

It’s difficult for a child to focus and participate in school when they don’t have a place they can call home. Teachers and staff face these challenges daily in their schools.

What I’d like to see our legislators do during their brief time in Olympia this session is focus on funding education adequately, which is their legal responsibility, and deal with the reality of our homeless youth.

Since that isn’t likely to happen, here are some programs that are working on the increasing amount of homeless youth in Seattle for example YouthCare, ROOTS and Catholic Housing Services

I would suggest working with your school PTA on assembling and providing weekend snack packs for students on the free lunch program and ensuring that those students have adequate warm clothing, blankets and school supplies. Many times these students seem invisible to us but it’s important during these times to support families who have no where to go.

Dora Taylor


  1. sad to see that the boy and I are not alone….. enough homeless kids to populate a small town…. disgusting that this is the state of affairs in the 21st Century…

  2. Interesting. I just took a look at the website and Parents Across America, with my contact information, is listed as an endorser although I was not aware of providing anyone’s OK on this.

    I just sent an e-mail to the organization to let them know that and also see what we can do to support them in their efforts particularly during this legislative session

    Thanks for the heads up.


  3. Hello Dora,

    Perhaps you have already shared this with readers, but prior to this session, I heard legislators mention “a broader, bolder approach to education” — and as you will see, this national policy campaign has roots in Seattle with Norm Rice and some policy leaders at the UW as original signers.


    I think it is time to take another stab at a state income tax initiative. The climate has changed since I-1098 failed.

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