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Nationwide Homeless Numbers Mirror Alaska

By Garrett Turner, Investigative Environmental Reporter, gturner@ktuu.com
Published On: Oct 29 2013 04:32:59 PM AKDT
Updated On: Oct 28 2013 12:00:00 AM AKDT

(KTUU-TV, 10-27-13)

ANCHORAGE, Alaska -

The latest nationwide homeless numbers are being mirrored here in Alaska. According to records from the U.S. Department of Education, the number of homeless students from the 2011-2012 school reached its highest rates ever.

For officials with the Anchorage School District, the numbers are not a shock.

"Anchorage's numbers pretty much mimicked those," Davey Mayo-Kiely, ASD Director of “Child in Transition,” said. “That year we saw an 11 percent increase in our homeless student population, which is about a 50 percent increase over the previous five years."

Mayo-Kiely says one in every twenty students were homeless in '11-'12. The "Child In Transition" program works to help those students who have an uphill battle by providing them with as many resources as they can to help them succeed.

"It's really challenging for those kids to succeed academically while they're trying to find a quiet place to do homework," Mayo-Kiely said. “Even trying to get to sleep at night can be difficult."

Here in Anchorage, organizations like Alaska Covenant House and Catholic Social Services have special programs for students and families to find shelter.

To learn more about those programs, you can go to ourhouseisfull.org or www.cssalaska.org.