Board of Education Comments on DACA

Sept. 7, 2017 ~ Board of Education President Brent McCune made the following comments about Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) at the Board of Education meeting on Thursday, Sept. 7.

"Our board has not yet had a chance to come together to discuss the rescinding of DACA because the developments have been so recent —  but I think it is an important topic for us to discuss tonight. Changes to DACA have the potential to impact the core mission of our organization.

"It affects some of our students who have a new uncertainty in their lives and creates another challenge for the teachers who are responsible for their learning. We could even potentially have staff members who are directly impacted.

"We work hard to keep our focus on student success and keep politics out of our discussions as much as possible. And I want to be careful not to turn this into any sort of a discussion about partisan politics, but I do think it is important that we address it.

"National School Boards Association, the national association we belong to, has put out a statement that I believe addresses the heart of this issue for school districts without being inflammatory.

"I'd like to read it to you tonight and ask this to be an official statement from the board to our community to make it clear that we welcome and serve ALL the children who come through our doors."

Statement from the National School Boards Association:

Public schools are a beacon of hope and opportunity for students and our country. The schools in our neighborhoods have educated generations of children, regardless of factors such as race, ethnic background, and immigration and socioeconomic status, enabling them to contribute to our economy and strengthen our democracy.

Since the first public school was founded, they have gladly accepted the immense responsibility given to them to help students achieve their full potential. Today, our schools are educating the most diverse student population in history, providing equitable access and ensuring that all students are educated at levels no previous generation attempted to achieve.
Public schools continue to make progress in helping students prepare for college, careers and life. However, progress is threatened if students are fearful of coming to school. NSBA is deeply concerned by the administration's decision to end the DACA program. We're long-standing supporters of educating all students regardless of immigration status. Now that the issue is solely before Congress, we urge it to amend the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act of 1996 to authorize the cancellation of removal, resolve immigration status, and work toward U.S. citizenship of undocumented students who are long-term residents.