Schoolhouse Link

Every child has a right to a public education, but when your home is in turmoil, it can be overwhelming to navigate school and social services systems. Schoolhouse Link is here to be your advocate helping students in transition attend and succeed in school. Schoolhouse Link operates under a contract with the Sarasota County School Board and serves as the District's official "homeless liaison".


McKinney-Vento Services

McKinney-Vento Services (McKinney-Vento Act 2001) are provided to students in residential transition to help them enroll, attend and/or succeed in school. In Sarasota County these services are provided through the Schoolhouse Link program, a partnership between the Safe Children Coalition, Inc. and the Sarasota County School Board. In addition, the program provides support to the entire family by linking them with essential service providers and community resources.

The federal McKinney-Vento Act guarantees school enrollment for anyone who, due to a lack of housing, does not have a fixed, regular, and adequate nighttime residence.


  • doubled-up with relatives or friends

  • in emergency or transitional shelters

  • in motels, hotels, trailer parks or campgrounds

  • awaiting permanent placement in foster care

  • in cars, parks, public places, bus or train stations or abandoned buildings

  • as a migratory child or unaccompanied youth


  • enroll and attend school no matter where they live or how long they have lived there

  • have access to the same public education provided to housed children.

  • enroll in school and attend classes while required documentation is being gathered

  • request assistance with transportation to school

  • receive free lunch

EXTERNAL Resources

Unaccompanied youth face a unique set of challenges when it comes to finding a place to stay, accessing resources or even considering continued education. The resources below are additional places unaccompanied youth can access support. Additionally, Schoolhouse Link has a person dedicated to helping unaccompanied youth in transition.

National Safe Place & National Runaway Switchboard

Legal Tools to End Youth Homelessness

Job Corps

Free Application for Federal Student Aid