School district says schools a safe place for undocumented immigrants

The South Lane School District Board approved a resolution on April 10 that would prohibit immigration enforcement from removing children from any South Lane School District School without parental consent or order from law enforcement that was deemed an authority. 

The move comes as immigration raids throughout the state and country continue to worry immigrant populations. The issue has continued to by muddied by previous laws such as the DREAM Act allows individuals brought to the United States as children a two year reprieve barring any serious crime, no longer being recognized by the current administration. Reports of DREAMers in Portland being detailed have rallied supporters and spurred attention to the issue. 

According to the resolution passed Monday night, SLSD believes education is vital to children and will no longer inquire as to a child's immigration status when enrolling. The district said it would also honor current Oregon law that prohibits state employees from using funds or efforts to detain individuals whose sole crime is being in the United States without proper documentation.

The state law was expanded by Oregon Governor Kate Brown after the current administration called for the deportation of undocumented immigrants. Previously, the statute prohibited only law enforcement from using state funds to detain or otherwise interact with an individal based solely on their immigration status. 

According to SLSD Superintendent Krista Parent, the resolution falls just below school policy, telling the board, "Policies are the law of the land and resolutions guidance on those policies." 

While the school board unanimously adopted the resolution, it stopped just short of declaring SLSD as a sanctuary school district. U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions spoke in March on the ongoing debate of sanctuary cities and institutions saying, "When cities and states refuse to help enforce immigration laws, our nation is less safe." 

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