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ESOL, School, and the Law

(The below are simply summaries. If you find them to be misleading in any way, please contact the district ESOL coordinator.)


School Attendance

Supreme Court in Plyler V. Doe [457 U.S. 202 (1982)]

All children living in the US, regardless of immigration or undocumented status, have a right to attend public primary and secondary schools. Schools are prohibited from doing anything to discourage any child from attending. A school may ask, but can not require, a social security number on an application.

Arkansas Law A.C.A. 6-18-201

Any adult residing in Arkansas who has custody of a child age 5-17 must send that child to school.

Arkansas Law A.C.A. 6-18-202

Public schools shall be free, from enrollment through graduation, from age 5-21.

Schools may require parents to prove their residential address.

Arkansas Law A.C.A. 6-18-208

To enroll a child in school, the parent, guardian, or responsible person must provide 1 of the following to prove child’s age: (1) A birth certificate; (2) A statement by the local registrar or a county recorder certifying the child's date of birth; (3) An attested baptismal certificate; (4) A passport; (5) An affidavit of the date and place of birth by the child's parent or guardian; (6) Previous school records; OR (7) A United States military identification. Only one is required.

Immunizations

Arkansas Law A.C.A. 6-18-702

No child shall be enrolled to school or childcare facility who has not been age-appropriately immunized. A Parent who objects to this must file an exemption form.

Arkansas Administrative Code 007.15.4.III

A school or childcare facility may temporarily enroll a child if the child is in the process of receiving the doses of vaccines. A parent who objects must file the exemption form with 15 program days.

Languages

Arkansas Law A.C.A. 6-16-104

The basic language of instruction in all schools shall be English only. However, teachers may communicate with the student in another language to facilitate learning.

Title VI, Civil Rights Act of 1964

No person in the United States shall, on the ground of race, color, or national origin, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.

Lau v. Nichols, 414 U.U. 563 (1974)

Students who speak a language other than English should receive help so as to become proficient in English.

Casteneda v. Pickard, 648 F.2d 989 (5th Cir 1981)

The ESL program must meet these requirements: (1) A proven approach to the education; (2) A reasonable implementation of the approach; AND (3) Outcomes reflection the approach is working.

U.S. Department of Education on May 25, 1970

Schools have the responsibility to notify parents in their language of school activities. Anything that is sent home in English must also be translated.

Immigration Enforcement

US Immigration and Customs Enforcement Memorandum on October 24, 2011

Discourages Immigration Officials from the following locations: schools, hospitals, churches and other places of worship, funerals, or public demonstrations.