Let’s dig in a little deeper to one of the proposed bills for the 82nd Texas legislature. HB 22, authored by Debbie Riddle, (R-Tomball), forces the creation of an immigrant blacklist in K-12 public schools.
HB 22 (Riddle) – Requires public schools to determine the citizenship and immigration status of each student when that child enrolls in the school. Require Texas public schools to compile information on students including “citizenship or immigration status,” and provide data to the state on the number of students who are “citizens,” “immigrants” or “enrolled in bilingual education.”
This is heinous. And people have been quick to respond. The Houston Chronicle has wasted no time in condemning HB 22.
Excerpts, Houston Chronicle Editorial, 1/2/11:
“Representatives of the Texas Association of School Administrators and the Texas Association of School Boards mentioned HB 22 as the most glaring new example of an unfunded mandate that could make their hard jobs even harder.”
“There’s no real reason to pinpoint the exact number of undocumented kids in Texas schools. Supporters say we could use that number to petition the federal government to get its immigration act in order. But it’s already clear that our national immigration system is broken, and that serious reform is required.”
“SB 22 would not save the state or its school districts money by forcing the schools to kick out undocumented students. A 1982 Supreme Court ruling requires American school districts to educate, for free, all kids who live inside their boundaries, regardless of immigration status – a practice that’s not just humane, but also has major long-term benefits for the state. Educated young people are a valuable work force. Uneducated ones are more likely to become criminals or teen parents.”
HB 22 incurs a cost upon the state: “HB 22 would force them to pay for the extra staff hours needed to deal with an onslaught of new forms. In the upcoming lean years, finding that time, with staffs already cut to the bone, will be painful.”
“The worst effect would be the one the bill would have on schools’ relationships with students’ parents. If parental involvement matters to students’ academic success – and almost everyone agrees that it does – then it’s a terrible idea to make our schools look like suspicious enforcement agencies. Demanding proof of a child’s citizenship doesn’t inspire warm, fuzzy feelings about joining the PTO.”
Riddle herself admits that the whole point of the bill is simply to have a registry of students. She knows they can’t be removed from the schools…she just wants them to be identified.
“The taxpayers are the ones who are paying the tab for these children to be educated. By law, if the children are here, then they must be educated. I’m not disputing that, but I do think it’s grossly unfair to ask taxpayers to pay for something they didn’t know they were paying for,” says Riddle, “If you’re going to ask taxpayers to pick up the tab, they at least deserve to know what they are paying for.”
I believe it was evil Dolores Umbridge who spearheaded the Muggle-Born Registration Commission…
If you’re a Pureblood, you have nothing to worry about. Hm, maybe Debbie Riddle looks more like Dolores Umbridge than she does Voldemort.
Nope, definitely Voldemort. Debbie Marvolo Riddle. It’s too easy.
January 25th is lobby day in Austin, Texas. A whole bunch of great, grassroots organizations are ready to throw the first punch (maybe a knockout punch, if you come!) in the fight for immigrant rights in Texas.
Register here… (p.s. it’s free).
Stay tuned! We’ll be tracking and reporting- and session kicks off on January 11th.
- Texas Moves to Adopt Arizona-Style Immigration Laws (immigration.change.org)
- Chron.com: Texas sheriffs split on making immigration checks (chron.com)
- Lawmakers in 14 States Coordinate Birthright Citizenship Attack (alternet.org)