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NCTE Position Statement

Resolution on Proposition 187

1994 NCTE Annual Business Meeting in Orlando, Florida

Background

Teachers who proposed this resolution said Proposition 187, passed earlier this month in California, denies educational and social services to undocumented immigrants, in this case, primarily Latinos. The proposition requires teachers to report their own students to legal authorities. They said the passage of Proposition 187 by an overwhelming majority reflects an attack on some of the fundamental tenets of American democracy, among them, that constitutional guarantees apply to all people on U.S. soil, whether they are part of the established majority or a socially stigmatized minority.

The members continued that Proposition 187 subverts basic American ideals, and that denying constitutional rights to a targeted group jeopardizes the rights of all. When education is denied to some based on their immigrant status today, they said, education can be denied to others on some other basis tomorrow. Be it therefore

Resolution

Resolved, that the National Council of Teachers of English promote the continuation of the American tradition of offering educational services to all who live on U.S. soil and condemn the denial of educational and social services to undocumented immigrants;

     that NCTE support teachers in their resistance to this and other such measures;

     that NCTE send letters of support to groups resisting compliance with Proposition 187 and any future legislation that denies educational and social services to undocumented immigrants;

     that NCTE support, as a friend of the court, litigation opposing the denial of educational and social services to undocumented immigrants;

     that NCTE at its 1995 Annual Convention in San Diego hold special workshops and protests against Proposition 187 and such measures and inform the media of such;

     that NCTE widely publish this resolution to its affiliates and other professional organizations through news releases; and

     that NCTE inform its members of future state and federal legislation that jeopardizes the constitutional right of all persons on U.S. soil to equal protection of the law.

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