The Fairfax County, Virginia, school board is working on a policy to ensure that teachers, staff and police officers assigned to work at schools do not share information on the immigration status of students and their families with federal authorities.
At a Tuesday work session, board members reviewed the proposed policy that mirrors county government policy, which does not allow sharing information with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).
School leaders said Fairfax County schools already adheres to such guideline, but the plan is to elevate the prohibition to the policy level and provide training to ensure that school employees and volunteers keep private the immigrant status of students and their families.
Staff who violate the policy could face disciplinary measures.
“We have some families who do not feel safe in our schools … they don’t access the services that we have. They are not filling out meal applications when they can so desperately need them,” said School Board Member Ricardy Anderson, of the Mason District.
Advocates of the plan say one of the intentions of the policy is to make sure that all families can access the services and benefits of the Fairfax County Public School system, regardless of immigration status.
“Our doors are open; they’re inclusive. And before you even get to know us, what you should expect from us is a culture and climate of trust,” said schools Superintendent Scott Brabrand.
The “Trust Policy” will be introduced during the board meeting Thursday and is expected to be voted on April 28.