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NYCLU: Schools create illegal enrollment barriers

Nov 29, 2014 12:05 am
Vince Pecoraro and Arthur Cusano are reporting in the Register Star several local school districts have been named by the New York Civil Liberties Union for maintaining enrollment policies that would have a chilling effect on an immigrant student's attempts to register. The NYCLU identified three districts in Columbia Co. and one district in Greene Co. The Chatham Central, New Lebanon Central and Hudson City districts all require entering students to produce a birth certificate. While the Greenville Central district does not require a Social Security number or birth certificate, registering students are explicitly asked immigration status questions. Under a 1982 Supreme Court ruling, states are in violation of the 14th amendment when undocumented children are denied the same educational opportunity as naturalized citizens. Schools are in violation of the law when they require birth certificates or inquire about the immigration status of a potential student or their parents. The superintendents from the Columbia Co. districts responded to the allegations, denying their districts have never refused enrollment to any potential student who was unable to produce a birth certificate. The survey, released last month, comes on the heels of a statewide study by the NYCLU in 2010 which found that one-in-five school districts were putting up illegal barriers to immigrant youth. Read the full story in the Register Star.
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