Ala. schools to cease checking legal status

MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - The Alabama Department of Education is doing an about-face after a U.S. Court of Appeals Friday blocked a portion of the state's tough immigration law.

HB56 required Alabama school administrators to check the legal status of students and report their findings to the state. The law's supporters said the move was purely for gathering statistics on illegal immigration, not as a way of identifying or punishing students who were in the country without documentation.

Opponents of the law said the school's gathering of such information could lead to discrimination. Many Hispanic students were counted absent in the days following the law's date of enforcement.

Friday, the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals struck down the school requirement portion of the law, even though it did not block the law in its entirety.

The court's decision prompted Interim State Superintendent of Education Larry Craven, to order schools to stop following that portion of the law. He issued this statement:

"The United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Judicial Circuit entered an order today that stops the implementation of Section 28 of Alabama's Immigration Law pending resolution of the appeal."

"All schools will cease to identify birth origin of students through birth certificates or affidavits as previously directed. Schools will revert to enrollment procedures in effect prior to September 29."

CLICK HERE to read more on the Appeals Court's decision.

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