President Obama has thrown down the gauntlet with an executive order that permits undocumented immigrants who have been here for five or more years to "come out of the shadows" and "get right with the law". Since the President asserts that his action is about protecting children, not criminals, it's reasonable to ask what the implications might be for education.
In reality, the elementary and secondary schools have always served students who lived here whether or not their parents were documented. The tricky issue has been and will continue to be higher education. While the admission of students will be fodder in some circles, the real policy debate will focus on who pays, and how much? Is the student who may have been dropped at the border, graduated from a public high school, and applied to a four-year public institution eligible for in-state tuition? That's a privilege usually reserved for those whose parents live here.
We are a Nation of compassion, but also a Nation of laws. Perhaps we should use these words as a guide: "I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America, and to the republic for which it stands, one nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all."
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