Plyler v. Doe
This June, it will be 30 years since the Supreme Court ruled that all children should have equal access to public education, regardless of citizenship or immigration status. This year’s anniversary is particularly monumental in light of Alabama’s passage of HB 56, a “show-me-your-papers” law that included a section requiring school districts to collect information on immigration status from public school students at the time of enrollment. HB 56, which was only in effect a few weeks before the public school section was enjoined by an appeals court, has led to increased Hispanic student absentee rates and 13.4 percent of Hispanic children withdrawing from Alabama public schools.
On May 1, Perez sent a letter to Alabama’s education department detailing the damage done by Alabama’s HB 56, which is a copycat of Arizona’s racial profiling law, SB 1070, now before the U.S. Supreme Court in Arizona v. United States.
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