WASHINGTON (WDTV)-- U.S. Senator Joe Manchin sent a letter to Department of Education Secretary Betsy DeVos Monday urging her to address the increase in child homelessness in West Virginia.
According to a release from Manchin's office, Manchin outlined in the letter concerning statistics regarding child homelessness increases in the state in the past year.
"I am reaching out to you today to raise awareness about some very disturbing news concerning the increase in the number of homeless children and youth in West Virginia," Manchin wrote. "The West Virginia Department of Education reported more than 10,000 children and youth have been identified as homeless for the 2018-2019 school year. We must come together and find solutions to help our local education agencies (LEAs) address this issue.”
Manchin also writes about the how there are not enough resources through the McKinney-Vento program and a Title-I program making it to schools and children that need them in the state.
"Of the 55 counties in West Virginia, only 8 counties applied for and received portions of the McKinney-Vento funding," Manchin wrote. "While all counties utilize the Title I set-aside, the amount varies from $500 to $50,000."
Manchin invited DeVos to come to West Virginia to see firsthand how it's impacting children in the state.
"Our local officials on the ground are working tirelessly to ensure every student is on the same playing field, but that is challenged even further by the increase of children experiencing homelessness," Manchin wrote. "I believe it would be extraordinarily beneficial for you to meet directly with the folks on the ground working with these children every day."