Government issues updated guidance to prevent discrimination against immigrant children

The law requires that all children have equal access to education regardless of their legal status. To help public schools prevent discrimination against immigrant children when they try to enroll in school, the federal government this week issued a updated guide of the procedures to be followed in the student enrollment process.

The updated guidance emphasizes the need for greater flexibility in the type of parental documents that must be accepted to prove a child's age and to demonstrate that they live within the school district that they are eligible to attend a particular school.

No school district shall inquire about the immigration or citizenship status of a student or his/her parents. The child's legal status is not necessary to confirm whether they live in the school district.

In addition, a "Fact Sheet"and a document with questions and answers in English and Spanish on the web about the rights of all children to enroll in school.

It is important for all parents to read these documents to ensure that their children are not discriminated against when enrolling in school.

These documents provide information and answers to questions you may have about the process. For example, they explain what evidence is needed to prove a child's age and to show that they live within the school district. They also explain the only circumstances under which a school district may disclose information from a student's education records without obtaining the consent of the student or a parent.