Answer: The U.S. Department of Education’s guidance states that the two general principles for using Title IA funds for homeless students are:

  1. Services must be reasonable and necessary to enable homeless students to take advantage of educational opportunities.
  2. Funds must be used as a last resort when services are not reasonably available from another public or private source.

There is a strong argument that the student could not attend school unless she had child care, and that the diapers and car seat might be necessary for her baby to participate in child care. You’d also need to ensure that the diapers/car seat are not “reasonably” available from another public or private source. It might be harder to make the case for the crib/mattress.

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