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Homelessness A Problem For Many Schools | Detroit , Michigan | Petoskey News

The number of Michigan students without a permanent address has risen dramatically as families lose homes through foreclosure and other strife, a newspaper reported Sunday.

More than 31,000 students were considered homeless during the 2010-11 school year, compared to 7,500 during the 2007-08 year, the Detroit Free Press reported, citing statistics from the Michigan Department of Education.

“It doesn’t matter how great your teacher is. If you go to five schools in a year, or no school at all, you won’t learn,” said Barbara Duffield, policy director at the National Association for the Education of Homeless Children and Youth in Washington, D.C.

Students with no permanent address are living with relatives or friends, or at shelters and motels. Nicole Larabee, 32, and her 14-year-old son, Matt Domagalski, have moved from house to house in Livonia in suburban Detroit. She was working for $12 an hour but quit in 2010 for another job that fell through.

The utilities were turned off at their home in August, and they slept on the floor until the bank foreclosed on the property. They’re now living in a friend’s basement, but it’s not the life they want.

“You never feel at home unless you have your own place,” Matt told the Free Press.

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via Petoskey News