IPS approves new resolution to help undocumented students

Indianapolis Public Schools logo. (WISH photo)

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) – Thursday night, it was standing room only inside as the Indianapolis Public School Board had several topics on the agenda. One of those items included Resolution NO.7736. The six bullet proposal would ensure undocumented students and their families would feel welcomed at IPS.

Dr. Lewis Ferebee and board members pushed the proposal. This comes after President Donald Trumps’ plan to increase immigration enforcement. Under Trump’s direction, the Department of Homeland Security has received orders to increase staffing for immigration enforcement, placing 11 million undocumented immigrants at risk of deportation.

In attendance at Thursday evening’s meeting were several parents who shared their children are concerned they will be deported and family members will be split a part.

“Parents come here wanting the very best for their children, they want their children to succeed and go to school, they just want to live in a country of tranquility,” said Cesar Roman, who acted as a translator for one mother.

Although the resolution can’t protect families from being deported, it has made it more difficult for the district to know a student or their parents’ immigration status. Below are some of the bullet points pulled from the resolution from www.chalkbeat.org:

  • IPS will remain a safe and welcoming place for all students and families regardless of their immigration status;
  • IPS policies against intimidation, bullying, or discrimination of any student, including those born outside of the United States or for whom English is a second language, will continue to be strictly enforced to ensure that all students are treated with dignity and respect;
  • IPS will continue to seek opportunities to increase and enhance programs and partnerships that support and assist immigrant students and families;
  • IPS employees shall continue to follow the policy and practice of not requiring social security numbers for any enrolled or enrolling student and will continue to refrain from inquiring about a student’s or parent’s immigration status;
  • As in the past, IPS employees will not collect or provide any information regarding a student’s (or his/her family’s) immigration status, except as legally required;
  • The Board supports U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement policy that restricts enforcement actions by ICE officers and agents in or around schools, and reminds IPS employees that they shall not assist immigration enforcement efforts unless legally required and authorized to do so by the Superintendent.

IPS School Board approved the proposal unanimously.

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