High School Resources

The lack of a high school diploma or a GED is the top risk factor for teens and young adult homelessness (Chapin Hall at the University of Chicago).   Nearly 60 percent of today’s jobs will require at least some advance training.  This means,  that homeless teen and young adult Dreams‘ must  include getting their  high school diploma or a GED. If you need assistance with enrolling in school, graduating high school or getting your GED, check-out the resources below:

Georgia's McKinney-Vento Liaisons

McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act, Title V11-B, Section 725(B), serves homeless children and youth who lack a—fixed, regular, and adequate nighttime residence, and provides homeless liaisons that are responsible for identifying students in homeless situations, enrolling these students, and giving them “full and equal opportunity to succeed.”

For smaller screens/cellphones, the map is best viewed on landscape.  To find the Liaison for your school district/county, Go to Select County on the right side of the dashboard. Click and a list of counties will appear, scroll down to make your selection. Click the name of your county and its location and contact information will appear on the map. Return to Select County, click go down and click Reset to clear the map. If you know the name(s) of your liaison scroll down the Liaison List on the left side of the dashboard, click the name of your liaison and its location will appear on the map. To clear the map, close the information on the map and go back to the Liaison list and click the blue icon.  All emails and phone numbers are linked just click to use. 

Free GED Classes

The Technical College System of Georgia offers Free GED classes.  Classes are available throughout the state.  Connect now to locate a class near you: https://tcsg.edu/adult-education/

Offers Hope 4 Tomorrow (H4T) a free mentoring program for youth 12 years and older.  H4T gives youth an opportunity to have another positive, engaged person in their life who they can talk to about problems, help them set and achieve goals, and just do fun activities like playing ball or going to the movies. 

Mentors are background checked through DHS and complete orientation, mentor training sessions, reference checks, and an interview process before being matched with a youth. Matches are based on multiple criteria such as geographic location, personality type, hobbies, and interests. 

H4T is available to youth in foster or kinship care that reside in Cherokee, Cobb, Dekalb, Forsyth, Fulton, or Gwinnett Counties.  To apply for the Hope 4 Tomorrow (H4T) Mentoring Program you can call (770) 317-3749 or email mentor@fostercares.org.  For information on the Foster Care Support Foundation click here: Foster Care Support Foundation

Additional High School Support Programs

Georgia has created a singular program known as Dual Enrollment for students in grades 10-12 who qualify to participate. Students may enroll on a part-time or full-time basis as a Dual Enrollment student and take college courses at their high school or on a postsecondary campus. Dual Enrollment ​is designed to prepare students for college and career opportunities. Students will receive high school and college credit, industry recognized certification or licensure, an associate and/or higher college ​​​degree simultaneously when attending and passing approved Dual Enrollment courses.

Application Process

Application Procedure for Dual Enrollment | Georgia Student Finance Commission (gafutures.org)

Frequently Asked Questions

Visit the GAFutures Website to view frequently asked questions

Other State Financial Aid Programs

The GAFutures Website also provides information about a number of other programs for state financial aid.

For information on Dual Enrollment contact:

Jennifer Phinney
Program Specialist, Dual Enrollment
Cell: 404-558-5398
Email: jennifer.phinney@doe.k12.ga.us​ 

Students participating in the GEAR UP Georgia programs around the state are provided supportive services to help receive their high school diploma, prepare for post-secondary education, prepare for careers, and support through their 1st year of college.

Gear Up Georgia Objectives:

  • Increase targeted Cohort and Priority Students academic performance and preparation for postsecondary education
  • Increase percentage of targeted Cohort and Priority Students who graduate from high school and enroll in a post-secondary institution
  • Increase student and family knowledge of post-secondary education options, preparation, financing, and careers
  • Increase targeted Cohort and Priority student persistence rates for year one of post-secondary education

To determine if there is a GEAR UP program in your county connect to the GEAR UP Program Coordinators Contact List After locating the GEAR UP coordinator for your county contact them for information on the program and the schools in your county that are participating in GEAR UP.

Coaching Students to Achieve and Succeed!

Our Mission

The mission of The Orange Duffel Bag Initiative (ODBI), a 501c3 public charity, is to provide high school and college students, experiencing homelessness, foster care, or poverty, evidence- and trauma-informed coaching programs and ongoing advocacy to improve their education outcomes; support to their caring adults; and service to the community in a spirit of fostering equity and offering hope.

Working in concert with mission-aligned organizations through a collaboration for collective impact model, ODBI offers at-risk students of diverse races, ethnicities, cultures, gender identities, and disabilitiesenrichment activities, trauma-informed nondirective counseling, and comprehensive programs that encourage and guide students via coaching and goal setting to create a plan for their education and future success.

Our Initiative

The ODBI initiative is to create community partnerships and achieve collective impact for positive systemic change and measurable results, and to serve and support students in need, helping them stay on track to achieve and succeed.

 Connect to Orange Duffle Bag:  https://theodbi.org, or call toll free: at 1-800-598-5150.

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