By: Raiderys Martinez, Middle School Director of School Culture
October 20, 2017
On Monday, October 9th, Inwood Academy for Leadership held an IAL Stands with Dreamers event. This was our third Family Day of Service and this year we chose to show our support of immigrants granted Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) status and their families.
Despite the rain, more than 300 of us marched throughout the Inwood community to protest the decision to rescind DACA. Staff, students, and families took to the streets and a contagious euphoria emerged. As we passed by pedestrians they joined us in the chanting and drivers, including an FDNY fire truck, honked to show their support. This made us all feel a closer connection to the wonderful community of Inwood.
We started the day at the middle school where we created posters to take with us on the march and staff took the opportunity to have conversations with families about the importance of DACA. Students on the debate team presented a pro and a con side of the DACA policy, dance classes performed, and one of our high school freshman students sang “Rise Up.” We ended the day back at the school with a performance by our Drum Corps.
Serving a community with a high population of immigrant families, Inwood Academy wants all our students and their families to feel welcomed and supported. We will continue to provide support to all our families regardless of their status.
As educators, we aspire to have all our students feel safe to pursue a quality education that will prepare them for college, career and a better life for their families.
The DACA policy, which protects around 800,000 Dreamers, could soon come to an end. The only permanent solution for our immigrant students is the DREAM Act of 2017, a bill introduced in the Senate in July that has bipartisan support. Passing this legislation would give Dreamers the security of permanent resident status and a path to citizenship so they can continue to go to school, work and participate in the country they have called home for most, if not all, of their lives.
Regardless of whether the DREAM Act of 2017 becomes law, we must continue to protect DACA. Protecting all immigrants from deportation is a priority for our immigrant community. Here is something you can do to help protect DACA: https://action.unitedwedream.org/petitions/keep-the-deferred-action-for-childhood-arrivals-daca-program/