Yesterday, the Trump Administration ended the immigration program called Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA. Among DACA participants are teachers in America’s classrooms, students in America’s schools, and graduates of America’s colleges. They came to the United States as children, they thrived in our country, and America is a better nation for having them here. There is now an even more urgent need for Congress to protect the hundreds of thousands of Dreamers and to create a lasting path for the many Americans who arrived as children and have done what we have asked of them in the time since. We join leaders of colleges and universities across the nation in urging Congressional representatives to help forge a legislative solution that, at a minimum, sustains the existing provisions of DACA.
Today we stand with Dreamers across the country, and we condemn this action as a violation of the commitment to fairness and decency that lies at the heart of our country’s promise. Below, please find the commitments we made to our community on January 20, 2017.
Dear Relay Community,
Since the presidential election this past November, the Southern Poverty Law Center has documented more than 1,000 bias-related incidents in the United States. The majority of these incidents have occurred in PK-12 schools. This open letter to President Trump, published by Stand for Children, encompasses many of Relay leadership’s views condemning all acts of hatred in schools. As educators, I know that you are making every effort to make your classrooms safe and inclusive, and we at Relay stand with you in that work.
At Relay, we are also deeply committed to creating a safe and welcoming campus environment for you regardless of how you identify with regards to ability, age, ethnicity, gender, immigration status, race religion, or sexual orientation. Across all of our campuses, we are discussing ways to best support each of you, and in turn, each of your students.
I am writing today to share commitments specifically related to potential changes to immigration law and policy as a result of a new presidential administration. That said, we are acutely aware that immigrants are not the only group among us feeling pain and anxiety right now. However, based on statements made during the 2016 election, we find it necessary to outline our commitments as they relate to immigration status:
- Relay believes that the diversity of our community makes us stronger and values all of our students and their PK-12 students regardless of immigration status. In addition to signing the open letter to President Trump cited above, Relay has signed this letter, which affirms our support for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA).
- Relay is committed to protecting the privacy rights of all of our students.
If you are a Relay student, and your employment changes as a result of changes to immigration policy or law, we will make every effort to support you in completing your certification or degree program. If you are interested in speaking to someone about anything that I’ve shared above, please reach out to Kelly Morris, our Chief Student Services Officer, at email@example.com to schedule a confidential conversation.
Thank you again for the work you do each day to create loving, joyful classrooms where all kids can fearlessly express themselves, listen to and learn from one another, and appreciate the differences that make us all collectively stronger.
With gratitude and admiration,
Relay Graduate School of Education