Helping Homeless Students in Yough School District


Education for Children and Youth Experiencing Homelessness (ECYEH) Program

ECYEH helps homeless children and youth access Pennsylvania’s public schools by removing barriers to a free and appropriate education. The goal of the program is to have a child’s education continue as uninterrupted as possible while he or she is homeless. The program also provides school supplies, transportation arrangements to and from school, and resources to the families of homeless children.


On July 22, 1987 the Stewart B. McKinney Homeless Act became public law. This was the first comprehensive federal law dealing with the problem of homelessness in America. Included in the 2001 No Child Left Behind Act, the law is now referred to as the McKinney-Vento Homeless Education Assistance Improvement Act of 2001.


Provisions of the Act:

  • Homeless Children have the right to attend either their original school or the school in the area in which they currently reside for the duration of the homelessness.
  • Schools are to immediately enroll homeless children and unaccompanied youth, even if they are unable to produce records normally required for enrollment, such as previous academic records, medical records, proof of residency, and any other required documentation.
  • In the case where the educating district is different than the district where the student is temporarily residing, both school districts are responsible for the facilitation of transportation in the best interest of the student
  • Immediately upon enrollment, homeless students are entitled to receive a daily, free school lunch.


The District Homeless Liaison can support and help students in homeless situations in many ways. Yough School District’s Liaison is Mrs. Dawn Hildenbrand, Director of Special Education.


The Liaison may assist families with the following:

  • Make sure students are enrolled in school immediately, even if they do not have the papers they would normally need.
  • Help families and youth get immunizations, immunization records or other medical records, if a student needs them.
  • Discuss transportation services and help set up transportation.
  • Ensure students get the school services they need.
  • Tell parents and guardians about all the programs and services the school has for their children.


If you are living in any of the following situations:

  • Shelter
  • Motel
  • Vehicle
  • Campground
  • Living with others because you can’t afford or find housing


We may be able to help you:

  • Enroll in school
  • Remain in your school if you move to another area
  • With transportation to and from school
  • Receive free school meals
  • Other services



Pennsylvania Department of Education: 

Available Resources: 

  • Westmoreland County Housing Authority: 724-832-7248
  • Westmoreland Non-Profit Housing Corp. Eastmont Estates Site: 724-838-0818 
  • Westmoreland County Department of Public Assistance: 724-832-5200 
  • PA Career Link Employment Services: 724-755-2330 
  • Angel Food Ministries through Life Spring Christian Church: 724-832-7514 
  • Homes Build Hope: 724-838-0752 
  • Habitat for Humanity: 724-523-0308 
  • Westmoreland Community Action- Next Step Housing Program: 724-834-1260
  • Referral Line- PA 211 Southwest: 1-800-222-8848 
  • Westmoreland County Food Bank: 724-468-8660
  • Welcome Home Shelter: 724-838-9133 
  • Blackburn Shelter: 724-836-1122 

The following numbers may be able to assist with first month's rent and/or security deposit:

  • Christian Layman's: 724-834-4464
  • Westmoreland County Housing Authority: 724-832-7248
  • Catholic Charities: 724-837-1840
  • Salvation Army: 724-834-3335 


Mrs. Dawn Hildenbrand, Director of Special Education

915 Lowber Road, Herminie PA 15637

724-446-7272, Ext 1004


Mrs. Debra Pils, Special Education Secretary

915 Lowber Road, Herminie PA 15637

724-446-7272, Ext 1045