Focus Area

Early Childhood

The early years of life from birth to age six are among the most formative and developmentally critical – the brain is growing, motor skills are being developed, and social emotional skills are being learned. But for the 556,160 children under age 6 experiencing homelessness, these milestones are at risk.

Case Studies

Highlighting programs in Chicago, Fort Worth, and Boston, emphasizing early childhood development, family support, and removing barriers to service access.
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New Report!

This report is the most comprehensive look to date at homelessness among infants and toddlers, and is the first state-by-state collection of data on infant and toddler homelessness.
Infant and Toddler Homelessness Across 50 States: 2021-2022

Head Start App

The goal of this app is to increase the enrollment of young children experiencing homelessness by serving as a link between K12 school districts and the Head Start and Early Head Start programs in their community who can serve them.
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Homelessness is a traumatic experience that harms young children and has been found to be associated with delays in language, literacy, and social-emotional development, putting children at risk for later academic problems. The younger and longer a child experiences homelessness, the greater the cumulative toll of negative health outcomes, which can have lifelong effects on the child, the family, and the community.

SchoolHouse Connection’s early childhood work is guided by the goal of increasing access to and enrollment in high-quality early childhood programs for families with young children experiencing homelessness. We go about this work in several ways:

  • Providing practical assistance to early childhood development programs and school districts to better understand what the law requires and strategies for supporting young children experiencing homelessness;
  • Publishing data, resources, and tools to expand access to high-quality early childhood development programs for families experiencing homelessness;
  • Advocating for policies that remove barriers for families experiencing homelessness to access high-quality early childhood development programs.
  • Providing strategic support to state and national partners working at the intersection of homelessness and early childhood education.

Early Childhood Resources

Explore our carefully compiled resources on federal early childhood law and policy, including tools, innovative practices, and the latest research.

Find State and Local Contacts

This homeless directory lists contacts for state coordinators, liaisons, Head Start collaboration offices, and homeless higher education liaisons.

Explore Other Focus Areas


Education is a critical strategy both for addressing child and youth homelessness and for preventing it from re-occurring in the future.

Higher Education

Post-secondary attainment is increasingly necessary to break the cycle of poverty and homelessness.

Policy Advocacy

Take a look at our federal policy updates, action alerts, and priorities.