With more than 190,000 immigrant students across New York State in public school, the recent scare of Department of Homeland Security officers looking for a student at a Queens school has undocumented immigrants living in more fear.
A new report finds major inconsistencies in how school districts are responding and the extent to which they are rising to the challenge of protecting and supporting immigrant students and families.
The report, “Safe Havens: Protecting and Supporting New York State’s Immigrant Students,” released by The Education Trust-New York, Advocates for Children of New York, the New York Immigration Coalition and The Committee for Hispanic Children and Families, Inc., finds that the New York State Education Department and the Attorney General’s Office can do more to protect students.
The report suggests welcoming all students, regardless of immigration status or national origin, better collection and handling of personal information, responding to federal immigration officials and supporting students and families when a parent, family member or guardian is at risk for deportation or has been deported.
The report was based on a review of documents from the 25 school districts that together enroll 80 percent of the state’s immigrant students.