No Back-to-School for Kids Who Crossed Border in AZ

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Tom Horne is on a mission. The wanna-be politician, in the running to become Arizona's next attorney general, is determined to keep kids who can't prove they are American citizens from attending school.

Horne—currently school chief in Arizona—has set his sights on Ajo, a town with a population of about 4,300 located just 40 short miles from the border. The school bus actually makes a stop in Luketown, a location literally on the U.S./Mexico border, where many students have crossed to attend local public schools for years. But back in May, Horne's office announced it was seeking $1.2 million from the Ajo Unified School District for using state funds to educate 105 students from Mexico.

Ajo superintendent Robert Dooley told the Arizona Reporter that the state investigation was flawed and that the district has found that at least 60 of the students in question are legal residents. Dooley said his district has toughened residency requirements and offered to settle the case brought by Horne for $300,000 (which  would result in the layoffs of four or five teachers), but the Arizona school chief has refused that settlement. Following the crack down, the Ajo school district began to require students to obtain and show bus drivers’ certificates that prove that they live north of the border.

To find out more about immigration laws state-by state, check out our interactive map!

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About this author

Mariela Rosario,

I'm a raging opinionista and I love to share my ramblings on everything from pop culture to food to stuff that makes me laugh & cry! I've worked in all types of media (TV, film, print) and was previously the online editor at Latina magazine before joining Mamás Latinas. On most nights you can find me working my way through my library of cookbooks or playing with my puppy Lola (my only child so far). I have a wonderful hubby who shares my passion for any and all kinds of travel. Together, we've formed a semi-professional wine drinking team.

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