Answer: “Yes, a housing questionnaire is a better name, and I am glad that you are eliminating the barrier of the affidavit! The law does not mention affidavits in particular, but it does require
that enrollment be immediate, even if the child or youth is unable to produce proof of residency or other documentation. 42 U.S.C. §11432(g)(3)(C). McKinney-Vento families do not have to provide proof of residency, so a school district requirement that they do so, or sign affidavits, or have a document notarized, violates the law. In addition, the law requires: “”(I) A demonstration that the State educational agency and local educational agencies in the State have developed, and shall review and revise, policies to remove barriers to the identification of homeless children and youths, and the enrollment and retention of homeless children and youths in schools in the State, including barriers to enrollment and retention due to outstanding fees or fines, or absences.”” Requiring a notarized affidavit is both a barrier to identification (some parents might not want to reveal their situation if they can’t access a notary or are just intimidated by the word affidavit) and a barrier to immediate enrollment (what if the notary is out sick, or for parents who are not at the enrollment center).”

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