According to the Texas Homeless Education Office, Texas school districts are educating over 100,000 homeless children each year – and this number continues to rise.
The Waco Independent School District has over 500 students considered homeless.
This is why Region 12, together with a number of other organizations, is combating the issue starting with educators. They are coming together to learn how to provide support and resources to those students in need.
“These are kids that are just in the environment. It’s not something they’ve done, and we need to keep them in their school systems so that they feel comfortable and they can graduate high school and move on to college, and as a community and a school help us provide those services for them,” says Kelly Bays, of the McLennan County Juvenile Probation Department.
Thursday’s workshop discussed everything from how to identify homeless and foster students to what the school districts can do to better serve them.
“Just the school alone or just the community alone can’t really provide all the services. They really need to work together. There needs to be that kind of collaboration where everybody can see what services are available, what’s offered,” says Jeanne Stamp, of the Texas Homeless Education Office.
The event continues on Friday, from 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.