4.7 percent of students with disabilities experience homelessness
Overall, 4.7 percent of students with disabilities experience homelessness across seven states and Washington D.C., according to a study published online March 28 in Pediatrics.
Emily Bock, from the Boston University School of Public Health, and colleagues compiled data from state departments of education and federal homelessness data to quantify students with disabilities experiencing homelessness in the Northeastern and Mid-Atlantic United States. The proportion of students with and without disabilities experiencing homelessness was calculated. Changes in homelessness in Massachusetts counties were examined compared with the 2018 to 2019 school year.
The researchers found that 4.7 percent of students with disabilities experienced homelessness across the seven states and Washington, D.C., compared with 3.0 percent among students without disabilities (disability to no disability homelessness ratio, 1.58). The highest and lowest proportions of students with disabilities experiencing homelessness were seen in Washington, D.C., and New York and in Connecticut, respectively. Comparing 2018 to 2019 with 2019 to 2020 statistics in Massachusetts showed little change.
"Students with disabilities who are experiencing homelessness are a particularly vulnerable population and quantifying this population for the first time will provide policymakers with valuable information to be able to act to better support these students," the authors write.
More information: Emily Bock et al, Homelessness and Disability in Public-School Students, Pediatrics (2023). DOI: 10.1542/peds.2022-059885
Copyright © 2023 HealthDay. All rights reserved.