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State’s homeless student population grows to nearly 40,000

SEATTLE — Nearly 40,000 Washington students were homeless last school year, a 12 percent increase from the year before.

Our news partner The Seattle Times reported Tuesday that according to the state superintendent’s office, the number of homeless students grew in the 2015-16 school year statewide, doubling in 21 school districts. Statewide, about 4 percent of students experienced homelessness last year.

Under the federal McKinney-Vento Act, a student is considered homeless if he or she lacks a regular and adequate place to sleep at night. This figure includes students who sleep in shelters, motels, hotels or at someone else’s home.

In King and Snohomish counties, the number of homeless students grew 16 percent. The districts with the greatest percentage increases were Monroe, with a 71 percent jump, and Marysville, with a 67 percent increase.