In addition to the fears and trauma already impacting the mental health and well being of immigrant students and their families, schools across the country are now facing a new arena for crisis response preparation as they support students and their families following the devastating aftermath of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) raids. In Mississippi on the first day of school, ICE raided 7 plants in one community arresting 680 people leaving traumatized children at school with no parents at home or provisions for care by ICE. We hope some of the following resources will assist you in helping immigrant students, families, schools and communities. As School Social Workers who advocate for policy change, we have also included samples of district level resolutions to consider. As districts review policy and guidelines in supporting immigrant students and their families, be sure to “be at the table” during these discussions to include the vital role of the School Social Worker.
- Nationwide Resources for Latino and Undocumented Families Resources are in English as well as Spanish. Source. undocuscholars.com. Betancourt-Macias Family Scholarship Foundation
- NYC COVID-19 Resources and Information for Immigrants in Spanish. 4/12/2020 Source: Estamos Unidos, Mixteca Organization
- NYC and New Jersey COVID-19 Resources in Portuguese Nice 12 page document with graphics. Source: KILOMBA Black Brazilian Women Collective
- NYC & Tri-County Areas’ Resources for Vulnerable Populations 13 pages of resources. Updated every Wednesday by health.nyc.gov.
- New York State Youth Leadership Council Emergency fund for undocumented folks.
- RAISE: Undocu Workers Fund NYC The Undocu Workers Fund is a grassroots effort to provide monetary, immediate relief to individuals/families in mini-grants of $200
- State Senator Jessica Ramos COVID Resource Guide Spanish Version. 20 pages of resources. Updated 4/6/2020. Senator Ramos
- White Plains/Westchester Resources List COVID-19 In Spanish. 24 pages of resources. Source: City of White Plains?
Resources to Assist Schools in Responding to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Raids
- “10 Strategies for How Schools Should Respond to Help Children Impacted by ICE Raids” You can also download Infographic in English and Spanish. Source: Intercultural Development Research Association (IDRA), August, 2019
As threat of ICE raids increases, schools can take steps to put students at ease This article provides steps schools can take, the rights of undocumented students as well as SEL practices schools can put in place to assist undocumented students. Source: By Naaz Modan, August 8, 2019, Education Dive,
“Guidelines for Identifying Humanitarian Concerns among Administrative Arrestees When Conducting Worksite Enforcement Operations” Source: U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Cited in “ICE Raids Send Schools Scrambling” U.S. News & World Report
- “How Should Schools Respond to ICE Raids: Some Advice” Source: Education Week, August, 2019
- “ICE Raids Send Schools Scrambling” By Lauren Camera, Education Reporter:Aug. 8, 2019, U.S. News & World Report
- ICE Policy Memo: Enforcement Actions at or Focused on Sensitive Locations “designed to ensure that these enforcement actions do not occur at nor are focused on sensitive locations such as schools and churches” unless certain circumstances exist. This 2011 memo was recirculated in August 2016 by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security” August, 2019. Source: Cited by the Intercultural Development Research Association (IDRA).
- “Legal Issues for School Districts Related to the Education of Undocumented Children” (36 pages) Source: National School Boards Association and the National Education Association.
The Rights of Immigrant Students
- “Fact Sheet: Information on the Rights of All Children to Enroll in School” Source: U.S. Department of Justice, U.S. Department of Education
- “Immigrant Students Rights to Attend Public School” Intercultural Development Research Association (IDRA)
- “Welcoming Immigrant Students to School” Infographic of students rights and other resources. Source. Intercultural Development Research Association (IDRA)
- The Young Center for Immigrant Children’s Rights “The Young Center is a champion for the best interests of children who arrive in the United States on their own, from all corners of the world. We serve as trusted allies for these children by accompanying them through court proceedings, advocating for their best interests, and standing for the creation of a dedicated juvenile immigrant justice system that ensures the safety and well-being of every child.”
Supporting Immigrant Children & Their Families
- Future Of DACA Affecting Mental Health Of Young Undocumented Immigrants Martinez, N. 2018, January 5. Houston Public Media University of Houston.
- “Immigrant & Refugee Children: A Guide for Educators and School Support Staff” “This guide was created for educators, school support staff and service providers who teach, mentor and help open the doors of opportunity for undocumented youth and unaccompanied and refugee children currently living in the United States. ” Source: American Federation of Teachers. (32 pages)
- New York Immigration Coalition. In addition to advocacy, the “NYIC provides multilingual informational materials on immigration law, citizenship requirements, school registration, healthcare access, and voting rights.”
- New York State New Americans Hotline: 1-800-566-7636 is available to anyone with immigration questions or impacted by ICE raids.
- “One Of The Nation’s Poorest Districts Has Found A Way To Help Immigrant Students” “Students in the Syracuse City School District speak more than 70 different languages and four of the most common among them are Nepali, Karen, Somali, and Arabic. ” “Schools are under federal pressure to translate for immigrant families. Here’s how one of America’s poorest school districts is trying to find a solution.” Editor’s note: Hopefully these are opportunities & services from School Social Workers or at least could be. Source: . The Hechinger Report. Reprinted by the Huffington Post.
- “Resource Guide: Supporting Undocumented Youth” Source: U.S. Department of Education. October 20, 2015. (63 pages)
- Guide to Higher Education for Undocumented Students. Source: 6/1/2021 Best Value Schools
- “Toolkit for ‘Immigrant and Refugee Children: A Guide for Educators and School Support Staff’ “ Source: Teaching Tolerance, Spring 2017
- The Trauma Of Family Separation Will Haunt Children For Decades By Stephanie Carnes, a bilingual licensed clinical social worker at a public high school in New York. 6/22/18
- “You are Welcome Here: Supporting Immigrant Students and Families” Source: Winter 2017-2018. American Education, Vol. 41, No. 4. pp. 4- 15.
- We Are All Immigrants: Supporting the Success of Immigrants in New York The state of New York provides numerous resources to assist immigrant families. Source: New York State, ny.gov
Establishing School Policies to Protect Immigrant Students
- “Broward schools to immigrant students: ‘You’re safe with us’ “ Source: Caitlin McClade. August 29, 2017. Sun-Sentinel
- FAQs on Safe Zone School Board Resolution Sample Language/Guidance Source: NEA EdJustice
- Sample Board Resolution on Immigration Safety. Source: NEA EdJustice
If your school district is considering issuing a resolution, please also see samples from other districts below as possible references.
- Austin ISD Resolution to create safe environments for all students. 2017. Available in Spanish, Arabic, Vietnamese & Burmese.
- Broward County: Resolution Designating the School Board of Broward County, Florida, as an Inclusive, Safe and Welcoming District Ensuring a Protected Space and Environment for All Students Regardless of Immigration Status, Religion or Country of Origin to Learn and Thrive
- Denver Public Schools Board Resolution to Protect All Students Available in multiple languages. February 16, 2017
- Durham, NC: Resolution Opposing the Immigration and Customs Enforcement Actions and the Deportation of Durham Public Schools Students
- L.A. Unified Campuses as Safe Zones and Resource Centers for Students and Families Threatened by Immigration Enforcement, See also LA Unified Reference Guide. February 9, 2017
- Oakland CA USD Resolution Reaffirming District Facilities, Programs Are a Sanctuary for All Children and Adults, Resolution is available in multiple languages. December 14, 2016 OUSD is a “Sanctuary District”
- San Antonio: Resolution to Reaffirm the Board’s Commitment to the Admission, Safety and Privacy of our Students, San Antonio ISD. February 13, 2017. See also“FAQs Concerning Immigration Status and Students in Public Schools”
- The Catholic Legal Immigration Network (CLINIC) “CLINIC tackles problems faced by low-income immigrants and our member agencies that can only be resolved through advocacy, education, pro bono representation, litigation, and media. CLINIC’s Advocacy section identifies legal trends and issues affecting immigrants and pursues responsive solution.”
- ImmigrationLawHelp. ImmigrationLawHelp.org is a searchable online directory of over 1,000 FREE or low-cost nonprofit immigration legal services providers in all 50 states. Only nonprofits that are BIA recognized or have attorneys on staff are included in the directory. Users can search [this site] by state, zip code, or detention facility. Users can also refine their search by types and areas of legal assistance provided, populations served, languages spoken, other areas of legal assistance, and non-legal services provided. Source: Immigration Advocates Network
- Kids in Need of Defense “KIND staff and our pro bono attorney partners at law firms, corporations, and law schools nationwide represent unaccompanied immigrant and refugee children in their deportation proceedings. ” “KIND serves as the leading organization for the protection of children who enter the U.S. immigration system alone and strives to ensure that no such child appears in immigration court without representation. We achieve fundamental fairness through high-quality legal representation and by advancing the child’s best interests, safety, and well-being.”
- The Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service
- The National Immigration Law Center The National Immigration Law Center is the only national legal advocacy organization in the United States exclusively dedicated to defending and advancing the rights of low-income immigrants and their families. The center envisions a United States in which all people—regardless of their race, gender, or immigration or economic status—are treated equally, fairly and humanely; have equal access to justice, education, government resources and economic opportunities; and are able to achieve their full potential as human beings.
- New York Legal Service Providers View our directory of low-cost legal service providers. Search the directory by specialty, by languages spoken or region using the filter Source: New York Immigration Coalition
- New York List of Pro Bono Legal Service Providers To search nationally, click here. Source: U.S. Department of Justice
Supporting Immigrant Student Resources: NYSSSWA Membership Dollars At Work
The New York State School Social Workers’ Association (NYSSSWA) is the only professional association dedicated solely to the visibility and viability of School Social Workers in New York State. Members are essential to our ability to support you and our profession. If you are not a member, join us today so we can continue to provide advocacy and services on your behalf.