Councilman: Public school staff telling immigrant Brooklyn students to ‘start packing their bags’ after Trump election

Welcome to America: Carlos Menchaca says Department of Education staffers are bullying immigrant children in the wake of Donald Trump’s election.
Brooklyn Paper
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Public school employees are bullying immigrant students in Bay Ridge and Sunset Park, saying “they’d better start packing their bags,” on the heels of Donald Trump’s election victory, according to a letter Councilman Carlos Menchaca (D–Sunset Park) and members of two local community education councils sent to schools chancellor Carmen Farina on Nov. 15.

“I recently met with parents from CECs 15 and 20 and local community organizations. They expressed urgent concerns about what their children have experienced at school since the recent national election,” Menchaca wrote. “Parents have reported to me alarming details of recent student bullying, harmful language, hostile treatment by non-teacher employees, and students overhearing inappropriate comments among DOE staff.”

Sunset Park is home to a sizable immigrant community, most notably from Mexico and China.

During the election, Trump made deporting Mexicans in particular a centerpiece of his platform and repeatedly disparaged Mexican immigrants as “criminals” and “rapists.”

There has been an uptick in hate crimes following the election, according to the Southern Poverty Law Center, which has tallied more than 400 incidents nationwide since Nov. 9 — 137 specifically targeted immigrants.

A school custodian at PS 169 in Sunset Park was overheard saying, “I hope he builds the wall, and I hope they throw them over the fence,” according to a crossing guard who asked to remain anonymous because she did not have the Department of Education’s permission to speak to the press.

Parents there are outraged.

“It’s despicable to say things like that around children,” sad Sunset Parker Marisol Garcia, whose daughter is a first-grader at PS 169. “I want my daughter to feel safe at school. We shouldn’t have to worry about someone making her scared that we’re going to be deported.”

The school is known for its diversity, and the majority of its 1,624 students are Asian or Latino, according to Department of Education data.

And students aren’t just hearing things from school staff.

The morning after the election, people have driven by the school as students arrived for class shouting, “All you immigrants are moving out of here,” and “Yes, Trump won!,” according to the crossing guard.

Several students were crying out of fear that their families are going to be deported, according to parents. And some parents are even nervous to bring their students school following the election.

“It’s really upsetting to hear stuff like this is going on right here in Sunset Park, in an area that is so diverse,” said Victor Severino, whose son is a third-grader at PS 169. “I trust the school, but it It makes me nervous bringing my kid here.”

The city is investigating the reports and will follow up appropriately, according to an education department spokeswoman.

“Schools are safe havens for communities and we are dedicated to providing all students with a safe, supportive and inclusive learning environment. We have explicit protocols and robust training programs in place to ensure any incidents of harassment, discrimination, or bullying are swiftly addressed,” said rep Toya Holness.

A man punched a fellow diner in the face at a downtown bistro last weekend after she made disparaging remarks about the president-elect.

Reach reporter Caroline Spivack at or by calling (718) 260–2523. Follow her on Twitter @carolinespivack.
Updated 10:17 pm, July 9, 2018: Updated to include a response from the Department of Education.
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Reasonable discourse

Flora says:
It doesn't exist, he's making it up. He says what he wants to happen and has no connection to truth. This man never misses an oppurtunity to lie.
Nov. 18, 2016, 4:43 am
NN from Boerum Hill says:
What a shame. Brooklyn is a city of inmigrants. I hope anyone at the school who participated in this will be fired.
Nov. 18, 2016, 7:20 am
Mike from Slope says:
I keep reminding myself that Donald is a 70 year old obese man who loves McDonald's, never exercises, and is about to take on the most stressful job on the planet. How long can this really last?
Nov. 18, 2016, 10:10 am
Tyler from pps says:
Mike -- His plan seems to be filling the White House with clowns and not stressing about it because... well, he'll be fine no matter what happens. It's only the most stressful job on the planet if you actually give a sh*t.
Nov. 18, 2016, 12:01 pm
Barry from Flatbush says:
Trump is still facing child rape charges.
Nov. 18, 2016, 5:38 pm
old time brooklyn from slope says:
so mike - what have you done?
Nov. 18, 2016, 7:22 pm
Ms. Me from Bay Ridge says:
So why does the picture caption say "teachers" are doing this when the quote in the article says "non-teacher" employees?
Nov. 19, 2016, 8:51 am
Chaitanya from Williamsburg says:
Too many babies is their only fault.
Nov. 19, 2016, 11:59 am
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
I wonder how many wish they didn't vote for Trump and picked Hillary instead?
Nov. 19, 2016, 3:58 pm
Asian from Sunset Park says:
Menchacha frequently makes fun of Chinese, and tells fug off and eat some Noodles! But now he's suddenly all upset because someone said something mean to a Mexican...
Nov. 20, 2016, 8:55 am
Joe from Greenpoint says:
Hilary is still in bed. Hahahahahah
We don't have to look at or hear her for the next four years, or ever really. Oh thank the gods!!!!
When does she go to prison? Will Bill and Chelsea go too?
Nov. 21, 2016, 8:18 am
Charles from Bklyn says:
If true, the custodian should be removed. On the public dole workers complaining about immigration in New York City where illegal immigration helps the ecomony pay for their salaries is pathetic. Classic loser, all around.
Nov. 21, 2016, 10:06 am
peter from sunset says:
Everyone is getting upset over a crossing guard that all she does is gossip in the school when she should be doing her job and crossing the kids that's why she was removed .also Charles in neither republican or democrat but how do illegal help pay for anyone salary when they are here illeagal tax payers help the illegal not the other way around buddy you are a real rocket scientist
July 13, 2017, 2:40 pm

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