ArabicChinese (Simplified)EnglishFrenchItalianRussianSpanishSwahili

Stay Informed

Status of Undocumented Parent Volunteers

Leave a Comment


Yesterday, you may have read an article titled: Undocumented Parents Face Unequal Opportunities at Pennsylvania Schools.

While the article correctly points out some of the limitations facing undocumented parents in Pittsburgh Public Schools who may not volunteer in certain settings without their clearances, there are a couple of factual errors that we thought we should clear up.

First, there are many ways parents without clearances, including undocumented parents, are able to participate in their child’s school.  In the 12th paragraph Ms. Bernstein states that undocumented parents are unable to attend PTO meetings, this just isn’t true.  All parents are able to attend meetings and participate in schoolwide events where there are other adult staff present.

The second thing that needs to be corrected is the statement that the Latino Parents United in Action group only meets at the current location of the Latino Family Center.  The group’s first meeting was actually held at Beechwood Elementary.  The group was then hosted at the Latino Family Center, which was located on the Southside at that time.  It was only until recently that the group met at the new location of the Latino Family Center.  The group has also met at three other sites since it’s inception. The meeting place is important, because there is an implication that there isn’t effort being made to accommodate parents from other communities. The additional implication that Latino parents are not welcome at schools, like Beechwood, just isn’t true.

Now does the District have work to do to provide better resources for parents in their native languages? Yes! Here’s a link to a video from parents in their own words about what they’ve experienced and what improvements they’d like to see.