Proposal to deny illegal immigrant children access to free education filed in Yucaipa

For years, California public education has been considered a right for all children, available for free from kindergarten through the 12th grade. However, one anti-immigration activist wants to take that away from undocumented children. 

The ballot initiative filed in the Yucaipa-Calimesa school district, would prohibit illegal immigrants from attending public schools in the district. If they wanted to attend, parents would be forced to pay a non-resident tuition fee according to the filed ballot. 

The initiative would require at least 3,200 signatures for it to appear on an election ballot. 

The activist behind it all is Joseph Turner, the founder of American Children First. The target of Turner's initiative is the Supreme Court Case, Plyler v. Doe which prohibited schools from asking parents about immigration status while signing their children up for school. The decision also required the school districts to be responsible for the education of every student living in the United States. 

On his website, Turner lists a series of grievances against illegal immigration and claims no party affiliation. 

You sacrifice and work hard to give your child a better future -- moving into the best school district you can afford. Yet, our politicians allow millions of illegal aliens into our country and we spend tens of billions of dollars each year educating foreigners while our education system deteriorates.

Reaction to his proposal has been mixed at best on his Facebook page with many people calling Turner heartless and immoral for wanting to deny children access to public education. 

For his part, Turner seems unfazed by the criticisms telling ABC 7 that, "Their (undocumented children's) future should not be in this country. We shouldn't be planning on them being here."

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