The Fort Worth school board will vote next week on a resolution to declare the district “welcoming and safe” for all students, regardless of their immigration status, according to the board agenda released Thursday.
Under the proposed resolution, the district will “strive to create the safest possible environments for its students and employees ... free of insecurity and fear.”
The proposal comes a week after more than 15,000 students were absent from Fort Worth schools on “A Day Without Immigrants,” which was described as an immigrant strike in response to President Donald Trump’s immigration policy
The school district’s attendance that day was 82.58 percent, compared with the usual average of about 95 percent.
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Fort Worth school leaders have addressed the fears that persist in the immigrant community, district spokesman Clint Bond said this week. Many students are worried about raids by Immigration and Customs Enforcement. Others worry that family members will be deported and have expressed these worries to educators.
The issue was recently discussed in a meeting with principals, Bond said. School leaders have been asked to work with teachers and counselors to be “extra empathetic to some stress levels that our students and/or parents may share,” Bond said in an email.
The proposed resolution would be the latest measure by the district to ensure a welcoming environment for students.
Earlier this month, the board passed a racial and ethnic equity policy aimed at helping more students succeed by eliminating institutional racism that creates opportunity gaps for minority children.
Last year, the board drew headlines after implementing a restroom policy for transgender students. The district later changed the policy to say the issue would be handled case by case.
Staff writer Diane Smith contributed to this report.