By: Rachel Hawkins NDG Staff Write
Irving ISD Trustee A.D. Jenkins addressed the topic of immigration and the fear the current political climate creates on June 18 during an Irving ISD school board work session meeting. Resolution: 17-18-22: To express support for immigrant students and parents was approved during the Irving ISD school board meeting the following Monday on June 25.
“This is something that is near and dear to my heart,” Jenkins said. “I know for a fact that this is something that the board does not have jurisdiction over or something that can be guaranteed at all, I understand that. But me personally, I feel that this resolution was written is a resolution of comfort to others, a resolution of solidarity, and it’s a resolution of ‘hey I got your back’.”
Irving ISD stated in the resolution their goals are to recognize and celebrate the rich diversity of students, staff and families within the ISD Community, including many who are foreign-born and recent immigrants to the United States.
“I think that this is the minimal thing we can do as a board,” Jenkins said. “I know that for a fact that our board does care about our students. Just as my three boys know that I love them, but there are times when you have to tell them personally that you do love them. What I’m hearing all the time is people saying why no one is talking about it, but there is a lot of talk about it. But this is a time as a board member that feel like I should say something and I should step up.”
“People are going around in fear,” Jenkins said. “You may not hear it but just pay attention and observe what is happening.”
The resolution also included, “The Board of Trustees of the Irving Independent School District hereby expresses its support of members of the IISD Community who are negatively impacted and reaffirms its commitment to strive to be an education-focused environment, free of insecurity and fear, for all its students.”
Dr. Wanda Zamorano, a retired educator voiced her emotions and agreement for the resolution.
“I really appreciate the fact when Jenkins presented the resolution, I’m glad he used the words comfort, solidarity, and the board has their back,” Zamorano stated.
She also expressed satisfaction with the 3rd whereas section where Jenkins interjected the word ‘value’.
“A few months ago there was a safe resolution that was not passed. You would think it would have been unanimous,” Zamorano said.
Nell Anne Hunt, the trustee for District 2, brought a similar proposal forward during the beginning of the school year.
“I agree with Mr. Jenkins, we find ourselves in situations where some of the students are documented and some are not. As a school, we are to educate all students. This is a show of good faith, and let the kids know that they can come to school and learn.”
In 1970 Zamorano started the Migrant Education Program.
“I have seen first-hand the Hispanic population, I know of the respect they have for the education system, and I have visited their homes,” Zamorano said. “I think because I have witness things in the 70s, it has brought me to where today that we need to reassure all students. Students need to feel a part of the system, and we want to see them be the most and the best they can be.”
“Once an educator always an educator,” Zamorano shared.