Area schools scramble to meet the emotional needs of illegal children

Sep 12, 2014 by

All summer, Central American children caught at the U.S.-Mexico border have been trickling into the Washington area, sent to live with relatives in Latino communities. Now, they are descending en masse on the region’s public schools, bringing an array of problems that school officials are scrambling to address.

Ripped from distant worlds, most of the new students speak no English, and some are psychologically scarred from abuse by gangs or smugglers. Reunited with parents or other relatives they barely know, and still grieving for family and friends back home, they may feel depressed and resentful.

“Some of these kids arrive feeling very angry,” said Rina Chavez, a counselor with the Montgomery County schools. “After years of living with their grandparents, suddenly here they are with mom and a new stepdad and two younger siblings. Then they are expected in a heartbeat to sit down and learn, but they may not be ready.

via Area schools scramble to meet the emotional needs of undocumented children – The Washington Post.

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