Fear of Deportation Is Driving Migrant Kids to Stay Home from School

As ICE boasts about its strict enforcement tactics, it declines to acknowledge the jarring impact these raids have on US soil: Many students have simply stopped going to school.
News Story (NATIONAL)

Meredith Hoffman
February 25, 2016

Tags: Education, Farm and Migrant Workers

Organizations mentioned/involved: RAICES (Texas)


Attendance dropped by one-third in several classes at Riverside High School the day after Acosta’s arrest, according to Bryan Proffitt, the president of the Durham Educators Association. Since then, he told me attendance both at Riverside and neighboring schools has remained “inconsistent.”

“Not only have they lost a student who is perceived by his peers to be a leader and who is really active in the school community, but also there’s a ripple effect at their school and at schools around the county,” Proffitt said. “There’s truth to the argument that even kids who aren’t victimized by these raids are pretty traumatized.”

It’s not just in Acosta’s school district: In the Washington, DC area, school attendance has also dropped in fear of raids and school principals are grappling with how to protect their immigrant populations. Community groups in Maryland’s Montgomery County and Prince George’s County gathered in January, distraught over the raids.