U.S. law requires children five and older to attend school full-time until the end of the school year in which they turn 16. Parents and guardians may risk their own status if children are not registered and attending school. Sign up in the school district where you live. If you are not sure of the district, contact UIDN.
Resources for Supporting Immigrant Students
Unless otherwise noted websites and materials listed here are in English only.
Best Practices for Serving English Language Learners and Their Families (Jarah Botello, Maya Lindberg, Lauryn Mascareñaz, Steffany Moyer, Hoyt J. Phillips III, Adrienne van der Valk, Teaching Tolerance, 2018, 17 pp) Topics include classroom culture, family and community engagement, instruction, anti-bias strategies, planning and program monitoring.
Eight steps to establish support systems for undocumented students: How colleges and universities can help (Kevin Escudero, The Hechinger Report, May 8, 2017, 6 pp). Escudero, a faculty fellow with Brown University’s Undocumented Student Program provides real-world examples for each proposed step.
Guidance on Rights of Immigrant Students and Dignity for All Students Act (New York State Education Dept., 2017, in 20 languages including Spanish and English) provides information on students’ rights with ideas for creating and keeping classrooms as safe havens for all.
A Guide to Creating “Safe Space” Policies for Early Childhood Programs (Rebecca Ullrich, Center for Law and Social Policy (CLASP), 2019, 9 pp) for practitioners, advocates, and policymakers. Includes information and resources to help design and implement “safe space” policies that safeguard early childhood programs against immigration enforcement.
Immigrant Learning Center offers “tested, contemporary tools and strategies to incorporate immigration across the curriculum, teach English to Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL), create more welcoming classrooms, foster understanding and empathy, and center the immigrant voice in conversations.
Immigrant and Refugee Children: A Guide for Educators and School Support Staff (United We Dream, National Immigration Law Center, First Focus, and American Federation of Teachers, 2016, 32 pp) Includes, facts, advice, and actions for schools and communities with “tear & shares” to distribute. Also explains the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act, which prohibits schools from giving student information to immigration agents without parental consent. A 6-page summary appeared in Teaching Tolerance, Spring 2017.
Racial Justice in Education: Resource Guide (National Education Association Ed Justice League, 2018, 80 pp) emphasizes awareness, capacity, and action with material on creating a welcoming environment and additional resources. EdJustice also reports on actions by teachers around the country and offers know-your-rights flyers on DACA, (2018, 1 pp), Immigration and Schools (2 pp), and Immigration Enforcement (4 pp).
Safe Havens: Protecting and Supporting New York State’s Immigrant Students (Education Trust NY, Advocates for Children of NY, NY Immigration Coalition (NYIC), Committee for Hispanic Children & Families, 2017, 22 pp) includes recommendations for how the state, school districts, and individual schools can improve support for students. Additional NYIC materials for educators on mental health, activities, higher education, bullying, and more.
Protecting Our Students (4 pp) explains basic rights plus 15 things schools can do to help protect undocumented students and families and how to plan for immigration-related family emergencies. Produced by the American Federation of Teachers, First Focus, National Immigration Law Center, and United We Dream.
Adelante Student Voices is a statewide safe space for undocumented teens to explore their legal status and routes to college.
Network members attend summer sessions and quarterly reunions. Mentors also work with students to research policy and help with college planning. Undocumented New Yorkers currently in grades 9-11 are eligible for Adelante’s summer 2022 program.