Student Homelessness in Oregon Reaches Record Breaking Rates
Thursday, October 01, 2015
The largest increase came from the number of children living in motels (a 14 percent increase) and the number of unsheltered youth (a 19 percent increase). The number of homeless students who are unaccompanied by parents or guardians also increased by 6.5 percent.
“Despite an improving economy, many Oregon families are still struggling just to meet their most basic needs,” said Deputy Superintendent Salam Noor. “Far too many children don’t know where their next meal is coming from or where they will sleep at night.
Despite rising youth homelessness rates, the Oregon school district has hired liaisons to help students find a suitable home, as well as assist with school.
The increase in student homelessness in Oregon is perhaps due to the previous economic downturn and the inability for many families to recover.
“For many of our families, the economic recovery has not yet become a reality. Families are still looking for work, struggling to get by, and trying to provide a sense of stability to their children," said Oregon Department of Education Homeless Specialist, Dona Bolt.
According to the federal McKinney-Vento Homeless Education Program, students are considered homeless if they live in a shelter, motel, vehicle, or other forms of inadequate housing due to financial hardships. Youth homelessness also incorporates the "unsheltered," people who have no other option but to live in vehicles, tents, or substandard housing.
In Oregon, traditionally, homelessness is largely concentrated in urban areas, with a significant percentage of youth experiencing homelessness in both rural and urban centers such as Portland, Beaverton, Reynolds, Medford and Culver.
For additional information regarding student homelessness in Oregon, click here.
Related Slideshow: 6 States With The Highest Homelessness Rates
These six states all had at least 300 out of 100,000 people homeless in 2013.
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