FOR THE RECORD

DMPS to Immigrant, Refugee Students: You Belong, We Stand By You

Monday, January 30th, 2017
Sign that reads Iowa welcomes refugees

DMPS to immigrant and refugee students: you belong here and we stand by you.

The following statement is from School Board chair Teree Caldwell-Johnson and Superintendent Tom Ahart:

This weekend, much of the world’s attention was focused on an effort by the federal government to impose far-reaching restrictions on the ability of immigrants and refugees to come to the United States.

From protestors at airports and on the streets to lawyers and judges in courtrooms, there was a swift reaction by many in support of immigrants and refugees.

To all of our students who are immigrants or refugees – and to their friends and classmates and teachers who are also concerned because of these recent events – know that you belong here and Des Moines Public Schools stands by you.

We want to help you learn and succeed in school. We want to see you have fun and make friends and find your passions. We want to be there to celebrate that day when you walk across a stage to receive your diploma. We want to help you grow into the people you want to become.

At Des Moines Public Schools, we welcome immigrants and refugees as our students and families, as our neighbors and friends.

Over the years, thousands of refugee students from around the world have attended school at DMPS. Our students, parents and staff come from more than 100 nations, and each day dozens of different languages are heard in the hallways and classrooms of our schools.

Our diversity of language and culture and heritage is a part of our strength, in our schools and throughout this community.

When children in Des Moines show up at our schools – no matter their place of birth or religion or language or skin color – they should know that they belong here and we stand by them.

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