BEAVERTON. Ore. -- In less than two weeks, students in the Beaverton School District will head back to class. And for one particular mother, who has a son about to enter the 9th grade, that will be a major accomplishment.
"This is our home, I want him to stay here," said Allison Stoddard. And sometimes when you're a parent, you do whatever it takes.
Allison's son Ethan was looking forward to high school with his friends in Beaverton. So to make sure he could go to school there, Allison moved there - literally. She parked her camper right smack in the Beaverton High School parking lot.
"It's just a matter of getting, well, I don't even have an address to put down for them," Stoddard said.
Allison and her son are homeless, they have been for months. She's not on drugs and doesn't drink. She's just had some rough times of late and is trying desperately to get back on her feet.
Lisa Mentesana is the homeless liaison for the school district. "They don't have the resources to get out of the situation they're in. They don't even have a vehicle to tow this camper somewhere else," she explained.
Stoddard said she's been applying for jobs everywhere she can. But without a home address, getting hired is tough. "She's been out asking for job applications and she has the possibility to move forward," said Sara Palestino of the Beaverton School District.
Homeless liaisons with the district are optimistic. They assured that Stoddard is doing everything right, she just needs a break and a little help.
"If she could get help getting into a mobile home park, she has the income to make the monthly space payments," Mentesana said. "It's very little that she would need in order to move forward in her life."
The district towed her out of the campus parking lot. They had to. She's now on a side street and in a few days, police will make Allison and her son move again.
"We just keep getting moved by the police department, whatever," Stoddard said. But with a new school year approaching and an impressionable young kid about to start back in classes, Allison's focus remains the same. "My end result is just to make him comfortable, so that he can function in school and be a normal kid again."
Meantime, district officials said they're hoping someone in the community can help. If you know of a mobile home park, affordable housing or even a job opportunity you can contact the school district at (503) 591-4462 or email Lisa Mentesana, the Homeless Liaison for the Beaverton School District, at email@example.com. Another option is to email KGW reporter Chris Willis at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Beaverton School District serves more homeless students than any other school district in the state of Oregon.