Take action against borders in the classroom

Posted by Bella Sankey on 26 September 2016

It seems the Government’s ambition to extend borders into our communities does not end in our homes – it extends onto our roads, into our hospitals and now into our schools.

New Department for Education guidance for the collection of school census data includes a requirement on schools to collect country of birth and nationality data on pupils aged two to 19.  Schools have already started to contact parents to request this information.

Against Borders for Children – a coalition of parents, teachers, data protection and migrants’ rights campaigners – is taking a stand against this divisive and unnecessary policy, which seeks to embed the ethos of hostile environment in classrooms across the country.

The very real fear is that this data will be shared with the Home Office and used for clumsy and damaging in-country immigration enforcement operations. This in turn will deter vulnerable children and families from accessing essential services and exercising their human rights.

Liberty is joining the campaign against this disturbing programme of data collection – and you can too.

Parents can refuse to provide nationality information for their children by joining the national boycott and using the template letters provided by Against Borders for Children. If you are a parent, or know one, please spread the word.

Racist and xenophobic hate crime has soared in recent months, including serious assaults on children.

At this critical moment, the Government should be using its tremendous powers to affirm the safety and dignity of all migrants in the UK and especially children. It should not be sowing division and fear in our schools.

Parents and schools can take action to protect children now.