Hope for the Future: Enhancing Support for Students Experiencing Homelessness

December 2-3, 2013

The Hotel Roanoke & Conference Center, Roanoke, VA

Day 1: December 2, 2013

  • Housing Panel - Current and Emerging Trends
    • Speaker(s)
      • Erika Jones-Haskins, Homeward
      • Kathy Robertson, Department of Housing and Community Development
      • Pamela Kestner, Health & Human Resources, Commonweath of VA
    • Session Description
      • This session includes a presentation and panel discussion on rapid re-housing.  Presenters give an overview of rapid re-housing and the associated outcomes, discuss state and local coordination efforts, explain changes in funding that support the further implementation of the model, and highlight ways schools and continuums can partner to increase planning and coordination around services to families served by the motel.

  • Foster Care and Kinship Care
    • Speaker(s)
      • Renee Garnett, Virginia Department of Social Services
    • Session Description
      • This training serves as an overview of the Fostering Connections Act, whichvpromotes educational stability for youth in foster care.  Participants will have a better understanding of provisions that support educational stability.

  • Dealing with Challenging Behaviors in Young Children: When the Saints Come Marching In (presentation)
    • Speaker(s)
      • Selina Flores, T/TAC at Virginia Tech
    • Session Description
      • Top ten things you can do to facilitate positive and independent behaviors before those little feet come marching through your doors.  How does your classroom/program measure up?  Are you up for the challenge?

  • Collaboration with Title I (presentation)
    • Speaker(s)
      • Nancy Lantz, Rockingham County Public Schools
      • Patricia Julianelle, National Association for the Education of Homeless Children and Youth (NAEHCY) 
      • Ernestine Scott, Richmond City Public Schools
      • Malora Horn, Roanoke City Public Schools
    • Session Description
      • This panel discussion provides a national overview of successes and challenges when serving homeless students and local views from large and mid-sized Virginia school divisions.  When/How can Title I funds be used? What happens when Title I funds cannot be used?

  • McKinney-Vento 101 (presentation)
    • Speaker(s)
      • Patricia Popp, Project HOPE - Virginia
    • Session Description
      • This session is a basic overview of the educational requirements for the McKinney-Vento Education for Homeless Children and Youth (EHCY) Program and its implementation in Virginia.

  • Community Collaboration for Program Enhancement
    • Speaker(s)
      • M. Gay Thomas, Virginia Beach Public Schools
    • Session Description
      • This session provides information on how to increase the visibility of your program in the community, to include avenues for donations, special projects and program support.  See how a small article in the parent newsletter turned into a back-to-school event serving over 600 in the three short years.

  • Unaccompanied Refugee and Immigrant Minors and Human Trafficking
    • Speaker(s)
      • Carolina Velez, CVelez Consulting
    • Session Description
      • This workshop is divided into two areas.  During the first portion, participants learn about the process, differences, complexities and challenges of unaccompanied refugee and immigrant minors in the United States.  During the second half of the training, participants learn about the basics of human trafficking: what, where, why, and when it happens.

  • Data Report or Treasure Chest? Using What You Have to Support Students (presentation)
    • Speaker(s)
      • Christina Endres, National Center for Homeless Education
    • Session Description
      • Districts have a plethora of data at their fingertips, but liaisons aren’t always sure what’s available or how to use it.  We discuss ways to use data to advocate for and support students while improving program outcomes.

  • Accessing Higher Education (presentation)
    • Speaker(s)
      • Cyekeia Lee, National Association for the Education of Homeless Children and Youth (NAEHCY)
      • Jennifer Martin, National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators (NASFAA)
    • Session Description
      • This session provides important information about supports available to homeless youth as they seek opportunities for education beyond high school. Participants gain a better understanding of: finding a good campus fit with support services, the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) process and how it works, practices that have been successful in helping youth who are homeless gain access to higher education resources, higher education resources available to undocumented homeless youth and additional resources that can be used to support homeless students in accessing higher education.

Day 2: December 3, 2013

  • Resilience Among Our Youth: Launch the Frog!
    • Speaker(s)
      • Patricia Julianelle, NAEHCY
    • Session Description
      • Research has shown that resilience is ordinary, not extraordinary.  In this session we hear from and about youth who have developed resilience and how every one of us can nurture resilience in young people.

  • The Complexities of Domestic Violence and the Effects on Children
    • Speaker(s)
      • Carolina Velez, CVelez Consulting
    • Session Description
      • Every child has the right to be nurtured and feel safe.  Domestic violence affects children’s lives at a psychological, emotional and sometimes, physical level.  At this workshop, participants learn about the complexity in the dynamics of domestic violence and how children deal and cope every day when living in homes where violence is present.  This workshop allows participants to engage in conversations about how we all can contribute to end violence from our professional and personal roles.

  • The Transportation Puzzle
    • Speaker(s)
      • Kathi Sheffel, Fairfax County Public Schools
      • Patricia Julianelle, NAEHCY
    • Session Description
      • Providing transportation for homeless students is challenging!  This workshop reviews some best practices from school divisions across the country, as well as one large school division in Virginia.  This is an interactive discussion of logistics and successes.

  • Support for Homeless Youth in Higher Education
    • Speaker(s)
      • Mary Herrington-Babb, Richmond City Public Schools
      • Dedra Hampton, J. Sergeant Reynolds Community College
      • Cyekeia Lee, NAEHCY
      • Jennifer Martin, NASFAA
      • Renee Garnett, Virginia Department of Social Services
    • Session Description
      • This Panel discussion focuses on best practices to assist unaccompanied homeless youth that transition from high school to post-secondary education and beyond.  McKinney-Vento, social service, and higher education professionals share tips for completing the FAFSA, discuss documentation needed to determine a homeless students status for post-secondary education, and share resources available on the local, state, and national level for unaccompanied homeless youth.

  • Programming for Older Youth (presentation)
    • Speaker(s)
      • David Mount, Seton Youth Shelters
    • Session Description
      • This session addresses disconnected youth, the “trauma” factor, and the challenges of transitioning into adulthood.  There are opportunities to explore the gaps in service surrounding these youth and potential resources within Virginia that are available.

  • A Youth Perspective
    • Speaker(s)
      • Elaine Williams, Student, Virginia Union University
    • Session Description
      • A student shares her personal experiences with homelessness and barriers to K-12 and higher education.

  • Miracles are Free: Building a Successful School and Faith Community Partnership
    • Speaker(s)
      • Natalie May, Richmond City Public Schools and Change the World RVA
      • Alia Adlich, Richmond City Public Schools
    • Session Description
      • Faith communities are a largely untapped resource to support homeless children and youth.  We tell of a successful partnership between three high schools and a ministry helping homeless students succeed in school and life.

  • Providing a Bright Beginning for Preschoolers Experiencing Homelessness (presentation)
    • Speaker(s)
      • Stephanie Leek, Williamsburg James City County Public Schools
      • Sabrina Clemons, Williamsburg James City County Public Schools
    • Session Description
      • This session focuses on a program for providing services to the children identified as homeless in the Bright Beginnings preschool program in Williamsburg James City County Schools.  Program model, implementation, and supporting data is provided.

  • Landlord and Tenant Rights (presentation)
    • Speaker(s)
      • Christie Marra, Virginia Poverty Law Center, Inc.
    • Session Description
      • The session provides an overview of the laws related to residential rental housing in Virginia.  Basic rules regarding landlord and tenant responsibilities, duration of tenancies and the proper process for terminating a tenancy are covered.