NEW YORK (PIX11) — With homeless students in New York City missing school at alarming rates, advocates on Wednesday demanded the Department of Education take action and use federal funds to help the city’s homeless youth population.

The number one factor most closely associated with young adult homelessness is whether or not you have a high school diploma, advocates say. So if you want to break the cycle of homelessness, you need to provide the support to homeless students and give them a fighting change to graduate.

The Department of Education is getting $24 million from the American Rescue Plan specifically aimed at helping children experiencing homelessness. Advocates for homeless children want to make sure that money is used right.

More than 100,000 New York City schoolchildren were homeless at some point during the 2020-2021 school year, one report found.

PIX11’s Kala Rama has more in the video above.