ID Checks May Reduce Parent Participation

WACO, Texas
Published: December 27, 2009

Several schools in the Waco Independent School District have instituted a controversial ID program to track everyone who enters school grounds. The system, which checks state IDs for all parents and visitors, has received mixed reactions from the community, which is comprised of some undocumented immigrants.

Undocumented parents, who have no official state or national identification, are hesitant to try to enter their child’s school, reports the Waco Tribune-Herald. While the district has not mandated the use of a visitor management program, several schools, including Bell’s Hill elementary School, are using the system to prevent sex offenders from gaining access to the campus.

Those unable comply with the ID check because of lack of national documentation fear being deported. However, Bell’s Hill Principal Bevil Cohn says the school doesn’t want to deny parents’ participation in their child’s education.

Cohn says the school will look at undocumented parents on a case-by-case basis, and things like parent conferences can still occur on campus.

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One parent suggested that parents pay the school to issue IDs for parents as well as children in order to comply with those without a valid ID.

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