A National Campaign Building a Stronger Future for Homeless Students

More than 1.3 million homeless students K-12 have been identified in America’s public schools


Goals of the Campaign

Education Leads Home is the only national campaign focused on closing educational achievement and attainment gaps for homeless students.

By 2026, young children experiencing homelessness will participate in quality early childhood programs at the same rate as their housed peers

A 90% high school graduation rate for homeless students by 2030

A 60% post-secondary attainment rate for homeless students by 2034

Upcoming Events

  • [Webinar] Be Attentive to Attendance: Leveraging Chronic Absenteeism Data to Help Students Experiencing Homelessness

    Students who miss 10 percent or more of days enrolled are defined as chronically absent–including both excused and unexcused absences. When students consistently miss school, it is often a sign of underlying challenges and may signal a student is experiencing homelessness. How can we use available attendance data to help identify these children and youth in crisis? During this webinar, we’ll talk with district homeless liaisons and researchers about the significance of attendance data for homeless students, how we can turn data into substantive interventions, and how we can transform those best practices into meaningful policy.

Recent News

  • Education Leads Home State Partnerships on Student Homelessness Project

    Education Leads Home announces a first-of-its-kind partnership that brings together policymakers and practitioners from six states — California, Kentucky, Hawaii, Nevada, Oregon, and Washington — with the goal of overcoming child and youth homelessness through education. Through the partnership, each state is committed to researching and implementing replicable best practices that address the most urgent needs of their unique homeless student populations.

  • Education Leads Home Releases Homeless Student State Snapshots

    State-level data shows that homeless students graduate on time at significantly lower rates than their housed peers. In fact, data from the National Center for Homeless Education1 released this week found a national average graduation rate of just 64 percent for homeless students, as compared to the low-income rate of 77.6 percent, and 84.1 percent for all students.

  • Guide to Using Sesame Street in Communities’ Resources on Family Homelessness

    More than one million American children under the age of six experience the trauma of homelessness. Additionally, public schools have identified 1.3 million children experiencing homelessness in grades K-12.

    Using the story of Lily, a resilient, hopeful Muppet whose family is experiencing homelessness, Sesame Street developed a set of free, bilingual resources for children and families experiencing homelessness and the providers who serve them. Also, because there is a role for all of us in supporting children and families experiencing homelessness, we offer age-appropriate strategies and activities for both the general public and for children and youth who wish to support their peers.

  • Risk and Resilience: Differences in Risk Factors and Health Outcomes Between Homeless and Non-Homeless Students in 2017 YRBS Data

    The Youth Risk Behavior Survey (YRBS) was first developed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in 1990 to assess the health risk behaviors of youth and adults in the United States. For the first time since the survey has been widely administered, the 2017 YRBS optional question list included two questions pertaining to homelessness. Using this YRBS data from 17 states (Alaska, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Delaware, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Kansas, Kentucky, Maine, Montana, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and Wisconsin), we conducted an analysis of differences in seven self-reported risk factors and health outcomes between high school students experiencing homelessness and those not experiencing homelessness.

  • Academic outcomes for students experiencing homelessness are far worse than those for housed students

    A new in-depth analysis by Schoolhouse Washington finds that students of color are impacted disproportionately and outcomes are poor no matter the type of living situation.

Join us

Education Leads Home is working to break the cycle of poverty and homelessness in this country. Join us in building a stronger future for homeless children and students.


Hidden in Plain Sight

Drawn from the voices of youth, this report details the struggles of homeless students and provides insight into helping them achieve academic success.

State Progress Reports

Learn more about the state of child and youth homelessness in your state.

Common Questions About Homelessness and Education

List of common questions about children and youth who are experiencing homelessness.

Tools and Resources on Early Childhood and Homelessness

Resources to help you learn about the needs of young children experiencing homelessness, and how communities can meet their needs.

Tools and Resources on PreK-12 and Homelessness

Carefully-compiled resources on federal preK-12 law and policy, including tools, innovative practices, and the latest research.

Tools and Resources on Higher Education and Homelessness

Resources to help you learn the challenges facing college students who are homeless, and how higher ed institutions and communities can meet their needs.

Webinars on Education and Homelessness

Check out upcoming webinars hosted by SchoolHouse Connection and industry experts on the topic of homelessness and education.

The Lasting Influence of Homelessness on Student Achievement

The negative effects of housing instability are known, but this policy brief suggests that these effects do not end when a student is stably housed.

The Invisible Million

Learn more about student homelessness where you live and work with the new tool, The United States of Student Homelessness.

Core Partners

As national leaders in their fields, SchoolHouse Connection, America’s Promise Alliance, Civic Enterprises, and the Institute for Children, Poverty and Homelessness have released groundbreaking research and powerful resources relevant to education and child & youth homelessness.

These four organizations are partners in the work of the Education Leads Home campaign.

Social Hub


The Education Leads Home campaign is possible thanks to the generous support of our sponsors.

The Education Leads Home campaign is funded in part by a grant from The California Wellness Foundation (Cal Wellness). The Foundation’s mission is to improve the health of Californians. Cal Wellness is dedicated to promoting equity through advocacy and access.