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San Diego Unified Restricts District-Related Travel To Arizona


Aired 5/12/10

The San Diego Unified School District is the first large urban school district in California to publicly boycott the state of Arizona. The five-member school board voted unanimously on Tuesday to “restrict” travel to that state.

— The San Diego Unified School District is the first large urban school district in California to publicly boycott the state of Arizona.

Rancher Geoffrey Patch looks over the border between the United States and Me...
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Above: Rancher Geoffrey Patch looks over the border between the United States and Mexico on May 2, 2010 from Montezuma Pass, Arizona.

The five San Diego school trustees board voted unanimously on Tuesday to restrict travel to the State of Arizona. The board also voted to restrict participation in any conferences in that state.

San Diego Unified is the first big-city school district in California to make such a bold move. Denver Public Schools in Colorado also approved a travel ban.

San Diego school trustee Sheila Jackson says Arizona's immigration law is a civil rights issue that demanded the school board's attention. She worries kids could now be subject to racial profiling.

“(The policy) means kids cannot go out. Teenagers can not go out. Someone can pick them up if they’re just walking and don't have papers,” Jackson said.

Initially, the five-member panel was considering a resolution that simply warned students not to travel to Arizona. But trustee John Evans wanted the board to take a stronger stance by placing a restriction on district-related travel.

San Diego history teacher Dawn Miller applauds the decision. She told the school board its shows they're looking out for all kids.

“Anyone who is committed to the well-being of our children, and connected to the communities in which they live, will know this has everything to do with education,” Miller said.

A few critics disagreed. Parent Sheila Boling says the board is once again wasting taxpayer money. She told the school trustees they should move to Arizona if they want to voice their concerns.

“Stop inciting strife, anger and division on a topic that has nothing to do with the increasing concerns of education and budget cuts,” Boling told the board.

However, school officials say their bylaws allow them to take a stand on issues that directly impact the lives of students. About 75 percent of San Diego school kids are members of racial minorities. Forty-four percent are Latino.

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Avatar for user 'jimvsmij'

jimvsmij | May 12, 2010 at 10:57 a.m. ― 6 years, 10 months ago

Can public schools that our taxes pay for take a political stand which could influence the children as is being done in the Arizona boycott? Can they start saying that they are against abortion or telling the kids to persuade their parents to only elect only a Democrat politicains? In not saying I am for what Arizona is doing I'm just wondering.

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Avatar for user 'sdwoodworker'

sdwoodworker | May 12, 2010 at 9:34 p.m. ― 6 years, 10 months ago

I just sent this to the school board via email:

As a parent with two children who are students in the San Diego Unified School System (Jerabek Elementary), I am totally disgusted with the unprofessional and misuse of your position to further your political agena. You have no right to claim you represent my children or our family in this so called "resolution". In what world does a school board, of all things, assume the authority to represent families in political matters?. Is this to help you get re-elected? You were elected by the people to serve the people to do a job -- which is apparently what you are not doing. Considering the cuts in programs and teachers and the fact that California ranks towards the bottom in public education in this country, you would think there were more pressing matters to address.

I suggest you actually read the AZ law as based on your irresponsible comments, you have not read nor do you understand it. But then again, reading and interpreting laws from other states is not quite what you were elected to do, were you? Nor even qualified for that matter.

If this propagates to the classroom and is messaged to our children, I think this will elevate to the courtroom as I know I and others will seek to stop this total misuse of your elected position and unauthorized misrepresentation as presented in this "resolution".

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Avatar for user 'nanoantiques'

nanoantiques | May 12, 2010 at 10:21 p.m. ― 6 years, 10 months ago

Who are these people? Do they warn the children away from Mexico's blood bath? Are they weird and warped? I think they have too much time on their hands and need to concentrate on what's really wrong,our schools.It's easy to point fingers when you don't want to be the center of attention.Just look at them,they haven't had death squads surrond a house in their neiborhood and put a hundred rounds into it by a drug cartel poising as SWAT,like a neiborhood in Phoenix did last year. Just SHUT UP and do your job.You can and will be replaced.

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Avatar for user 'ChrisCooke'

ChrisCooke | May 13, 2010 at 9:02 p.m. ― 6 years, 10 months ago

Sheila v. Sheila. Sheila Jackson on the school board finds it more interesting to comment on another state's effort to control illegal immigration than doing her job. Sheila Boling hit the nail on the head by redirecting the school board to pay attention to its job and not distant political concerns.

As a lawyer, I find it fascinating how people with no formal legal education love to critique laws that have yet to be enforced let alone interpreted by the courts. Why do Californians turn a blind eye to illegal immigration? Why do legal immigrants discount their own efforts to enter and stay in the United States legally?

The federal government's inability to deal with illegal immigration drove Arizona to pass a law that gives local law enforcement the ability to deal with the problem. Racial profiling? Arresting school kids? Give me a break... Even Arizona cops have better things to do.

Hey school board....get back to work. If you want to be real politicians, run for a real political office. Your job is to manage the public school systems. Hey school teachers...stop cheering on political administrators and focus on educating your students. We could use more of that.

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