Taxpayers getting hit with additional costs to the schools, plus most refugees receive welfare benefits.
Somali refugee families resettling in Minnesota have spiked over the past few years, resulting in a huge surge of English-language-learner students that school systems have to adjust their entire curriculum and staff for. Today, roughly 20 percent of the St. Cloud school district’s 10,000 students are English-language learners, many of them Somalians. Nationwide, nearly 35,000 K-12 students report that they speak Somali at home.
School districts are finding it beyond challenging for any school district to work with English-learners. In addition to the culture and language barriers when dealing with the students and their parents, many of the refugee children have no formal education, even in their own language. Books and pencils are foreign objects to them.
Then there’s need to make them feel welcome. The majority are Muslim, and they do not leave their culture behind when they come to America. Schools, and communities, are the ones who must adapt.
Schools are making it so Muslim students have access to private rooms with prayer rugs for the five daily prayers. Districtwide, school lunch menus provide pork-free options for students, and staff members try to spur the newcomer students’ interest in sports, culture clubs, and other extracurricular activities. The district has partnered with the University of Minnesota to develop uniforms for female athletes who wear hijab, the headscarves worn by some Muslim girls and women.
To make matters worse, the Minnesota chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) filed a federal civil rights complaint against the St. Cloud school district in 2011, alleging a hostile environment for the district’s Somali students that included widespread and frequent harassment based in large measure, on religion.
Bottom line, they want America to feel like Somalia. For some reason, we’re granting them their way.
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