July 20, 2017 (New York) – Educators for Excellence (E4E), a teacher-led organization, responded today to the introduction of the DREAM Act - legislation that would create a path to permanent legal status for undocumented immigrants who were brought to this country as children - by Senators Dick Durbin (IL) and Lindsey Graham (SC). E4E praised the reintroduction of the legislation as an important step to bring stability to the lives of undocumented children and their families.
“The United States is home for my students, many of whom came here as infants,” said Jessica Cuellar, inclusion specialist at Community Charter Elementary School in Sylmar, CA, and a member of the E4E DACA Teacher Action Team. “I am grateful to Senators Durbin and Graham for proposing a pragmatic solution that will allow my kids to feel safe and secure, so that they, like their peers who were born here, also have the chance to achieve the American dream.”
“With the fate of DACA unclear, hundreds of thousands of young immigrants go to school each day fearing that their lives or those of their parents could be uprooted,” said Evan Stone, Co-Founder and Co-Chief Executive Officer of E4E. “The research is clear that kids who are afraid cannot learn. Our country has prospered because of the the ingenuity and hard work of immigrants. Preserving DACA and passing the bipartisan DREAM Act will ensure that we continue to do so.”
Earlier this year, more than 1,200 E4E members signed a letter calling on President Trump and members of Congress to fulfill the the promises made to undocumented students and families under DACA. The letter cited the significance of DACA in protecting the safety of students and educators with DACA status, as well as called for a solution, such as the DREAM Act.
In the letter, the E4E members also committed to:
- Making sure that all students are welcomed and included in our classrooms, regardless of immigration status;
- Protecting information about the immigration status of students and their families; and
- Supporting our students, our colleagues, and their families by advocating to maintain DACA and finding a more long-lasting solution.