Invisible To Many, Homeless Youth Are Struggling In Texas
How severe is the problem of youth homelessness in Texas?
There is no single data source that comprehensively and accurately documents the number of homeless youth in Texas, according to a recent report by Texas Appleseed.
Almost 3,000 students in the San Antonio Independent School District attend classes while homeless. Three Texas school districts educate 12 percent of the state's homeless students. SAISD ranks second highest, next to Houston ISD and Dallas ISD.
There are approximately 16,000 "unaccompanied" students who are not living with a parent or guardian and attending public school in Texas. However, this does not account for children who are not enrolled in school or teens who have dropped out. Finding an exact number for the homeless population is already a challenge.
What are San Antonio-area districts doing to help homeless students stay in school?
Young people who experience homelessness are vulnerable to becoming victims of human trafficking or other crimes. They are also at greater risk of developing health problems, which may go untreated.
What services and supports are available for homeless youth? What policy solutions could be implemented to end youth homelessness?
- Gabriella McDonald, pro bono and new projects director for Texas Appleseed and co-author of the recent report “Young, Alone, and Homeless in the Lone Star State”
- Estella Garza, senior coordinator for Family & Support Services at the San Antonio Independent School District
- Katelyn Underbrink, target populations and research project manager for the South Alamo Regional Alliance for the Homeless (SARAH)
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