Freedom Folks

Friday, February 24, 2006

Suburban Chicago School District's State Funding Pulled Over Immigration Issues

***SCROLL DOWN FOR UPDATES***


State Board of Education officials, led by an angry Mexican-American chairman, stripped Elmwood Park School District 401 of all state funding Thursday, saying officials there had illegally asked at least two potential students about their immigration status.

---SNIP---

"As the son of a Mexican American who was here illegally for eight years, you would have denied me an education,'' an angry Ruiz told Elmwood Park officials during the board's monthly meeting. "You are not supposed to discriminate against any children based on any immigration status.''

It's all here.


Elmwood Park District 401 attorney Jack Murphy insisted the district was merely trying to follow federal immigration laws barring a person on a temporary B-2 visa from enrolling in a school.

---SNIP---

For state board Chairman Jesse Ruiz, Elmwood Park's treatment of two kids -- one from Ecuador seeking high school admission, and another from the Czech Republic seeking to attend middle school -- struck close to home.
But here's the real irony for you, if you can stand it. The student from the Czech Republic sued and was admitted to Elm Middle School after admitting that her B-2 visa was expired, while the student from Ecuador remains at home with a valid B-2 visa. Why? Because our laws say that you can't enroll in classes if you're here legally on a B-2 visa, while in 1982 the Supreme Court ruled that illegal aliens cannot be denied a public school education.

How twisted is that?

And to add insult to injury...


In addition, the district was suspended from the Illinois High School Association, meaning its varsity boys basketball team can't play in the Class AA boys basketball tournament on Monday and its cheerleaders can't compete in the March 4 sectional competition.

---SNIP---

The district superintendent was trying to schedule a board meeting for today to see "what can be done to rectify the sanctions,'' said Elmwood Park High School Principal Jim Jennings. "I'm upset and disappointed in the fact that our current students are the ones being punished,'' he said.
As I always like to point out, why is it that no one EVER questions the actions of the parents in all this? They are the ones who put their children in this position. They are responsible for those kids, and all anyone ever does is whine about U.S. laws and their enforcement.

And, not to quibble with you Mr. Ruiz, but when you refer to the years that your father was in this country ILLEGALLY, he was not a Mexican-American -- he was Mexican. Nor would you have been denied an education because your father was here ILLEGALLY. You were born here, giving you a wonderful little thing called U.S. citizenship. Some of us value it highly and think it means something.

***UPDATE***

School district backs down in immigrant fight

Saying the education and extracurricular activities of children were at risk because of a cut off of state funds, officials of a west suburban school district today agreed to no longer consider a student's immigration status when enrolling a child.

Elmwood Park Community Unit District 401 officials hope to reach an agreement this afternoon with the Illinois State Board of Education to resolve the dispute, WGN-Ch. 9 reported. A deal would make it possible for student athletes to participate in weekend sports events.
Read it all here.

The good news is that the district's students may get to participate in their planned athletic events after all. The bad news is that...

"The (school) board is very reluctant to cave in to what the state board has asked, but they feel they have no alternative at this point because they need the money to run the schools," District 401 attorney John Murphy said.
But, hell, what's a little financial terrorism among educational entities?

School board Vice President Angela Stranges said she was "disappointed" the state board had acted before a federal judge could rule on a lawsuit filed by the district challenging the state's order to enroll the student. U.S. District Court Judge James Holderman was expected to rule on the case as early as next week.

"The children are being held hostage because adults won't allow their legal dispute to be resolved by a judge responsible for making these decisions," Stranges said, reading from a prepared statement.
Yeah. I'd hate to see taxpayers' hard-earned buckaroos spent on paying a judge to do his job and rule on this case, when they could be going to educate those who are here ILLEGALLY instead.





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