More than 1,100 Denver Public Schools students made their voices heard in downtown Denver on Tuesday morning, Sept. 5. Students joined other community members in a protest of the Trump administration’s announcement that it will rescind Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA). DACA was enacted by former President Obama in 2012 to provide legal protection for hundreds of thousands of undocumented young immigrants, or “Dreamers,” brought into the country as children.
Many Colorado “Dreamers” attended DPS schools or are DPS graduates who have built their lives here, including teachers throughout the district. Denver Public Schools were the first in the nation to employ teachers under DACA. Many of these educators are bilingual and can relate to the challenges our students face.
Our district and school leaders worked with students to provide activities that allow their voices to be heard on campus. However, some students chose to stage a student walkout. This was a peaceful effort. To ensure students’ safety, school and district employees accompanied students while they were off campus. In addition, DPS Safety and Denver police assisted in ensuring the safety of our students during the walkouts. Once on the Auraria Campus, students made speeches, chanted and displayed signs outlining their support of DACA. All students returned safely to campus.
Denver Public Schools will continue to educate all students, regardless of immigration status. The school district will continue its practice of not collecting or maintaining any information about our students’ immigration status. Additionally, DPS officials will continue to urge Congress to quickly take action to ensure that our undocumented students are free to pursue an education without fear of being separated from the communities that they have been a part of for years. For information on resources related to this issue, please visit: https://www.dpsk12.org/safe-and-welcoming-school-district/