Title of Product
Immigrant Children and Youth:
Enabling Their Success at School
Name of Author(s)
Center for Mental Health in Schools, Box 951563, Los Angeles
Date of Production
Language of the review
Language of the product
Type of product
Integration of immigrants students
Headmasters, Teachers, Students, Parents
Description of Contents
A great deal has been written about immigrant children and youth. This brief
focuses on implications for school improvement policy and practice. Discussed
are (1) different reasons families migrate, (2) concerns that arise related to
immigrant students, (3) prevailing school practices for addressing immigrant
concerns, (4) a framework for broadening what schools and communities do,
and (5) implications for policy.
All schools have an influx of newcomers. In some schools, many newcomers are
from another country. Newcomers vary in the type and amount of supports they
need to enable a successful transition and adjustment to school and neighborhood.
Beyond initial supports, schools receiving students from other countries need to develop
a full continuum of interventions to address immigrant concerns and a multicultural
A sense of need is reflected in concerns heard at schools across the country, such as:
A large part of our dropout problem is that so many immigrant students leave early
to go to work.
Immigrant girls are leaving school because their families have arranged marriages
for them as early as 14 years of age.
The refugee organization in our community is bringing in many families whose
children have never been in school.
Our schools have families who speak many different languages, and we don’t have
enough translators to facilitate communication”
On campus, student groups establish their territory and newcomers not only aren’t
invited in, they are stigmatized (e.g., labeled FOB -- Fresh Off the Boat).
Our ELL students aren’t doing well learning English and aren’t showing progress
on the state achievement tests; this is having a serious negative impact on our
average yearly progress.
Many parent are unhappy because we are not helping their children maintain their
Unannounced immigration raids at the packing plants during the school day led to
countless numbers of children coming home to find no adult there.