The Dynamics and Measurement of High School Homelessness and Achievement

Rajeev Darolia, Andrew Sullivan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


How school districts measure homelessness among their students has implications for accountability and funding, as well as for supporting student success. Yet, measuring homelessness among high school students is challenging because students move in and out of experiencing it. Using administrative student-level data from a mid-sized public school district in the southern United States, we show that different commonly used procedures to measure which students are considered homeless can yield markedly different estimates of high school graduation rates for these students. This is largely because of differences in how districts classify students who experience homelessness but later become housed. To address the potentially negative effects of housing insecurity on academic achievement, it is important to first identify a common way to diagnose the problem.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)413-421
Number of pages9
JournalEducational Researcher
Issue number7
StatePublished - Oct 2023

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023 AERA.


  • achievement disparities
  • achievement gap
  • at-risk students
  • descriptive analysis
  • high schools
  • homelessness
  • secondary data analysis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education


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