Data shows New York has the most child immigrants
New York counties have been a second home for many unaccompanied minors in the U.S. in recent years.
Over the last fiscal year, the U.S. Office of Refugee Resettlement reported that over 1,600 child immigrants have immigrated to Queens, Nassau, and Suffolk County during the fiscal year in 2015. Suffolk ranks 6th among all U.S. Counties while Queens and Nassau ranks 9th and 10th respectively.
According to the Migration Policy Institute (MPI), approximately 39,000 immigrant children will enter the U.S. as unaccompanied minors over the duration of this federal fiscal year. Most of them have immigrated to heavily populated states such as New York, California, Texas, and Florida.
As of September 2014, New York ranks first in the U.S. with education costs at $147.73 million which would account for over 4,000 UACs.
“As taxes increase, current homeowners in Hempstead are stretching their money to pay for these other [immigrant] children and families,” said James Clark, Associate Superintendent at Hempstead Public Schools.
During a Q & A session with Hempstead High School’s journalism club, Clark discussed the lack of support from the government officials for UACs, their families, and current taxpayers.
“That’s a government issue and that’s an issue we have with the mayor. Nowadays, people have small visions, they only have visions for themselves.”
As for the rest of the U.S., multiple news reports have stated that it will cost $761 million to provide sufficient education for immigrant students.
Earlier in 2015, New York State Attorney General, Eric Schneiderman announced that he would monitor 20 school districts to ensure that all students will receive enrollment regardless of their immigration status. This is despite the fact that NY will spend more than any other state in the U.S.
In terms of providing help for UACs, Clark explained that they do have some substantial resources that he noted as ‘a plus’ in their school district.
“We have bilingual classes, we have ESL (English as a second Language), we hire great teachers, and we have more access to resources than other districts in Nassau County.”
Accommodation for unaccompanied minors in other states is still a huge issue for the U.S. government. Corporation between communities, school districts, and government officials could potentially dictate how much progress occurs as this situation develops.