Teachers, school districts pledge to protect students from deportation, Muslim registry

Image courtesy Santa Clara Unified School District 

Some 15 school districts, teachers associations and other Santa Clara County organizations have resolved to protect undocumented, Muslim and LGBT students from actions by the incoming Trump administration, organizers said today.
Teachers, students and other organizers from the Alum Rock Union Elementary, East Side Union High, San Jose Unified and Santa Clara Unified school districts, the East Side, Evergreen and San Jose teachers associations, the Morgan Hill Federation of Teachers, United Teachers of Santa Clara; Californians for Justice, Sacred Heart Community Service, Services, Immigrant Rights and Education Network (SIREN) Somos Mayfair, the South Bay AFL-CIO Labor Council and Working Partnerships USA made the announcement this afternoon at a news conference held at the San Jose Unified School District office.
Organizers called for all Santa Clara County public education districts to adopt a "safe zone resolution" that would limit or eliminate communication with Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), declare campuses to be ICE-free zones and outline clear procedures for staff to follow if ICE enters the campus or sends the district requests for information.
The resolution would also ensure that student information would not be shared with federal agents for purposes of deportation or the creation of a Muslim registry.
"On Jan. 20, we're going to have a diametrically opposed administration from D.C.," said Andres Quintero, vice president of the Alum Rock Unified Elementary School District board of trustees.
"We want to make sure that we're well aware and well prepared for anything," Quintero said.
In addition to the other actions outlined in the resolution, schools would provide students, families and teachers access to information and resources that, according to organizers, would both protect students from danger and assuage their fears over any "hateful messages expressed by the newly elected presidency."
Teachers and staff would also be required to express support for students and families of all backgrounds, including those who are undocumented, Muslim or LGBT.