Win McNamee/Getty Images News/Getty Images

Here's How ICE Raids Are Affecting Kids Across The Country

Ad failed to load

Very quickly after taking office, President Donald Trump stayed true to his campaign promise to deport more undocumented immigrants. News of ICE, or Immigration and Customs Enforcement, raids across the country have caused panic and fear from undocumented immigrants and their families. And these fears are affecting children everywhere — especially at school. Here's how ICE raids are affecting kids across the country.

The Civil Rights Act of 1964 allows every child “equal access to public education — irrespective of race, color, sex, gender identity, religion, national origin, sexual orientation, disability, or immigration status.”

School officials everywhere, from The Massachusetts Department of Education, to Chicago Public Schools, are committed to upholding that right in the face of ICE immigration raids, and have promised not to question a child's immigration status. But how can educators teach children who have an undocumented parent who is too afraid to take them to school?

Ad failed to load

Last month, more than 680 immigrants were arrested in a five-day operation, The Department of Homeland Security announced, according to CNN. Anxiety is high, at least in part because some of the people who have been arrested are not criminals and weren't being targeted, NPR reported. Some have been detained despite having DACA — Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals — status, which protects undocumented immigrants from deportation if they came to the United States as minors.

Children are confused and scared, and teachers across the country are seeing the heartbreaking effects of the immigration enforcement order on a daily basis. “One of our kindergarten teachers had a little boy who brought a suitcase with him to class for two days,” Colorado Education Association Vice President Amie Baca-Oehlert told the National Education Association's Education Votes. “When she asked him what it was for, he said ‘I want to make sure I have my special things when they come to get me’.

Ad failed to load

One teacher in Austin had her students draw how they were feeling after news of the immigration raids:

Teachers have also observed undocumented parents acting differently, even changing their phone numbers, which prevents the schools from being able to contact them, Education Votes reported. Some educators have even described much emptier classrooms, a spokesperson for the American Federation of Teachers told Romper.

Ad failed to load

“What we’re seeing is a lot of parents who used to pick up their children from school and now they’re sending them on the bus,” a teacher in Austin, Texas, who asked to remain anonymous, told The Huffington Post. “The parents are afraid to come to the school.”

One parent, who was born in Mexico, told The Huffington Post that ICE parked a car just blocks from her daughter's elementary school. This is despite the fact that policy states that ICE isn't allowed to arrest or search for people at "sensitive places" such as churches, schools, or hospitals.

Ad failed to load

“The kids were very scared,” the parent told The Huffington Post. “Why do they have to be in front of the school? A child shouldn’t have to be living through this.”

And although many schools are helping educate undocumented students and parents about their rights, it's important to remember that not every educator is advocating on behalf of immigrant students. Some teachers insulted immigrant students on social media after they were absent from school on February 16th, which was #ADayWithoutImmigrants. One teacher wrote “mostly failing students were missing;” another wrote there should be more days without immigrant students because "there were no discipline issues” that day.

Ad failed to load

With teachers like these, students who are undocumented have more reasons not to go to school than being afraid.

Ad failed to load
Must Reads

New Moms Have Two Options: Be "Sad & Fat" Or "Desperate & Thin"

As the line goes, the worst thing you could say about me, I've already thought about myself. In the early postpartum period with my son, it was: "I am overweight, lonely, and heartbroken." It was four days after I brought my son into the world, and I…
By Danielle Campoamor

6 Fascinating Facts About Spring Babies: You Could Have A Leader On Your Hands

Does the season in which you are born affect you or are all seasons pretty equal? It turns out that there are many ways in which the your child's birth season could give you an insight into things to come. Whether you are expecting a baby in the next…
By Shari Maurer

Kids Will Love These TV Shows & Movies Coming To Netflix In April

It's that time of the month again: as March draws to a close, Netflix gets ready for a little bit of spring cleaning. Though some TV shows and movies will have to find homes elsewhere, their departure makes room for all kinds of exciting new media. A…
By Megan Walsh

I'm A Stay-At-Home Mom &, Face It, These 11 Stereotypes Are Totally True

Hello, friends! It's me, your resident stay-at-home mom. You know, there's a lot that's said about me and my kind, and the vast majority of it is not even remotely true. For example, this whole "we're lazy, vapid, unambitious, anti-feminist, backstab…
By Jamie Kenney

The Pressure To Worry About The Gap Between Kids Is So Bad For Moms

"Two under two is absolutely crazy," a friend recently told me upon hearing the news that I was expecting a second child. "Why would you do this to yourself? Seriously, why?" However harsh her words, she was only echoing the same feelings I'd been ba…
By Marie Southard Ospina

To Be Honest, I Couldn't Survive Motherhood Without My Job

The decision to work outside the home once you've become a parent can be a complicated one. Some people don't really have a choice, and go back to work because they're either a single parent or can't sustain their family on one income. Some choose to…
By Priscilla Blossom

I Feel Guilty That My Kid’s Dad Is A Better Parent Than Me, & That’s BS

I was scared, and he was sure. I was clueless, and he was well-researched. I was making mistakes, and he was picking up the pieces. From the moment I found out I was pregnant until just last night, when I threw my hands up in the air and left the alw…
By Danielle Campoamor

These Millennial Parents Are Taking Gender-Neutral Parenting To An Entirely New Level

A woman on the subway looks at my bulbous shape and asks, “What are you having?” I take a deep breath and throw a glance to my 5-year-old. “I’m having a baby,” I say to the woman. “No, no” the woman says laughing as she pushes further. “Are you havin…
By Madison Young

My Daughter Is Obsessed With Being "Pretty" & I'm Way Past Terrified

Last week, when I picked up my daughter after school, she immediately wanted to know if I liked her hair. "Is it pretty?" she asked. Her hair was pulled up into two ponytails that were intertwined into thick, long braids. A shimmering pink and purple…
By Dina Leygerman

7 Things No One Tells You About Having A Baby In Your 20s, But I Will

I was 24 when I found out I was pregnant with my daughter. The pregnancy was a surprise, since I was on birth control (side note: antibiotics and birth control don't mix), but my partner and I decided to continue with the pregnancy and committed to m…
By Candace Ganger

7 Things I Wish My Partner Had Said To Me In The First Hour After Giving Birth

I don't know if it was the buzz of the surrounding machines, the non-existent cry of our son as the doctors tried to resuscitate him, or the fact that I'd already been through labor and delivery once before, but I knew something was missing after I h…
By Candace Ganger

Moms’ Groups Weren’t For Me, Sorry

I go to my moms’ club everyday of the week, but not usually on weekends. My moms' group is a place I can always count on finding fellow mothers who understand the daily struggles and triumphs of parenthood and of juggling life’s responsibilities. Dep…
By Samantha Taylor

Millennial Women Are Getting Married Later Than Gen X, & The Reasons Why Are Pretty Badass

The battle of the generations seems to come up when it comes to every lifestyle or career choice people make. Women, especially, are an important demographic when it comes to analysts looking at the lifestyle choices we make or the expected milestone…
By Josie Rhodes Cook

I've Had 3 Miscarriages But *Please* Keep Telling Me About Your Pregnancy

I can feel the tension the moment my friend announces her pregnancy. I can hear the forced nonchalant attitude she's willing herself to exude as she fishes for the ultrasound. I know why I was the last to learn that she was expecting; why she keeps l…
By Danielle Campoamor

7 Early Signs You're Going To Need An Epidural, According To Experts

Even if you've constructed an elaborate birth plan, it's impossible to control every aspect of labor and delivery. Complications can occur, proactive measures might be necessary, and your mind is subject to change when those damn contractions really …
By Candace Ganger

I'm Pregnant & I Refuse To Read Any Parenting Books

I didn't read any parenting books when I was expecting my daughter, and I refuse to read any parenting books as I await my second child now. I'm the first to admit that I don't really know what I'm doing when it comes to raising my daughter. A good d…
By Marie Southard Ospina

12 Overnight Face Masks To Use To Wake Up Feeling Pampered AF

Spring is right around the corner, and as far as I'm concerned, the sunshine and warm breezes can't come soon enough. But now that we're about to say goodbye to winter, it's a good time to take stock of your facial skincare routine. You know, in the …
By Katie Malczyk

11 Essential Products To Pack In Your Hospital Bag, According To OB-GYNs

The minute you go into labor (or think you're going into labor), chaos ensues. You and your partner are likely to get a little frantic, just like in the movies, so you most definitely want to have a hospital bag packed before the day comes. This prec…
By Abi Berwager Schreier

7 Photos You *Must* Take In The First 6 Months Of Motherhood

In my experience, becoming a mom is like becoming an amateur photographer. There's just something about the need to capture every single coo and sorta-smile that leaves you obsessed with all things photography. I know I couldn't stop taking selfies w…
By Candace Ganger

Here's How Early An Ultrasound Can Actually Determine Your Baby's Sex

From the moment you see those two lines on a pregnancy test, there are a few markers along the way that stand out as especially exciting. Amongst them are hearing your baby's heartbeat and feeling that first, sweet little kick. And if you are finding…
By Caroline Shannon-Karasik