Educating Undocumented Students and Declaring “Safe Haven” School Districts
Legal Guidance, Sample Policies and Sample Resolution
California’s public schools have a unique mission to help all students succeed in college, career and civic life. This responsibility is reinforced, in a legal context, by the landmark Supreme Court decision in Plyer v. Doe. In that ruling, the Court held that school districts must not discriminate on the basis of race, color, or national origin, and that students not be barred from enrolling in schools on the basis of their immigration status or that of their parents.
The rights and responsibilities of schools districts that educate undocumented students have received renewed attention due to recent developments at the federal level. This has caused many districts to question how they can best uphold their obligation to serve all students, regardless of immigration status.
In response, CSBA has developed a new legal guidance, a pair of sample policies and a sample resolution addressing the right of undocumented students to an education, as well as the “safe haven” or “sanctuary” designation that has been adopted by some districts.
Please take the time to familiarize yourself with these documents and know that CSBA will continue to provide resources and guidance on this critical issue.