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KPS Board Supports Immigrant ’Dreamers’
Linda Mah
/ Categories: Communications

KPS Board Supports Immigrant ’Dreamers’

Board Urges Congress to Pass Immigration Legislation

The Kalamazoo Public Schools Board of Education on Oct. 12 unanimously passed a resolution supporting immigrant “dreamers’ and the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) Program.

In September, President Donald Trump announced he was ending DACA effective March 6, 2018, and that the approximately 800,000 young adults brought to the United States illegally as children who are in the program will become eligible for deportation. The five-year-old policy has let them remain in the United States without fear of deportation and given them the right to work legally. 

The resolution was offered by Board Treasurer Ken Greschack.

Board Trustee Dr. Lauren Freedman said in support, “This is such an important resolution for us as a board to pass. I think the Dreamers have been here and worked hard and done well, and we need them as a part of our community.”

The resolution said the district is fortunate to have students from many countries and that Trump’s actions were “alarming.” It urged Congress “to pass comprehensive immigration legislation to permit Dreamers to remain in the country without threat of deportation or other profound disruption to their lives.”

KPS Superintendent Michael Rice said the resolution, “is consistent with our support for the broadest range of diverse children and families.”

Board President Patti Sholler-Barber echoed those sentiments saying, “A huge goal, I think, of this board is to care for all children and to nurture, and to respect, and to keep safe all of our students. This is another extension of that.”

The resolution reads:

WHEREAS, Kalamazoo Public Schools (KPS) is the largest school district in Southwest Michigan and the second largest in West Michigan;

WHEREAS, KPS is one of the most ethnically, socioeconomically, and linguistically diverse districts in the state;

WHEREAS; KPS is fortunate to have students from many countries in the district;

WHEREAS, KPS views its diversity as richness, not stigma, and as a major point of pride in the district;

WHEREAS, the president, on September 5, 2017, the first day of school in many school districts in Michigan and across the country, ended the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, effective March 6, 2018, and encouraged Congress to pass legislation to address national immigration policy;

WHEREAS, the action of the president on September 5, 2017 was alarming to many in the

KPS community, particularly to those whose family members could be personally adversely harmed by the end of DACA;

WHEREAS, the end of DACA, without congressional action on immigration policy, would serve to harm many financially in our community:

NOW, THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Kalamazoo Public Schools Board of Education stands in solidarity with the Dreamers and encourages Congress to pass comprehensive immigration legislation to permit Dreamers to remain in the country without threat of deportation or other profound disruption to their lives.

 

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