Richard Kelsey

  • Guest Column
  • Borough school board

    must take a stand now

    Just a few years after expanding its schools, the Freehold Borough Board of Education is looking to expand again. I know, it’s for the children. It’s always for the children. Everybody likes children; nevertheless, it won’t surprise me if people accuse me of hating children or immigrants just because I believe expending tax dollars in furtherance of aiding and attracting illegal immigrants to Freehold at the expense of borough parents and their children is a bad idea.

    People say something must be done as the schools are busting at the seams. True, the schools and the town are overcrowded, if not overrun. Expanding the schools, however, is not the answer to Freehold’s problem. We tried that once already. I know, I sat on the last Committee for School Facilities, and I was elected by its members as spokesperson. That was 1996. Indeed, I was a vocal critic of the “need” to expand at that time. Like many on the committee who were not part of the education industry, we wanted answers and common sense solutions.

    Instead, we were force-fed rules, regulations, guidelines and state mandates. We were told that costly renovations were not an option, but a requirement of the law. So we complied, begrudgingly, though we knew the real root of the school population problem, illegal immigration.

    For the remaining lawful residents of Freehold, the overcrowded school problem is no longer about being forced to follow state law. It’s about being forced to provide for those who have no regard for federal law. School resources, including teachers, special educators, ESL staff and dollars for capital improvements are being diverted from students of lawful citizens to students who are either here unlawfully, or who are anchor children in a scheme to further break down national borders and stop immigration enforcement.

    Freehold is currently educating an estimated 350 to 400 immigrant children. These children are costing the borough almost $3 million a year to educate. It is unacceptable for members of the school board to permit those expenditures to continue at the expense of lawful borough children. To work with and to push for a referendum to expand schools and reward illegal behavior at the expense of lawful citizens is unacceptable.

    The school board is not helping our lawful children; it is helping illegal aliens. It is helping an education industry in New Jersey whose first priority is expanding its size and political power. Helping children is noble, and that is why I give of my time to do so. Being a patsy for illegal immigration, while costing borough families millions per year is neither noble nor necessary.

    The borough school board has an obligation to the borough’s lawful children. In many cases, the board and the teachers have done wonders with very few resources. Illegal immigrants are stealing and stretching educational resources. Make no mistake, forcing one’s child to rob a bank may not make that child a criminal, but the child’s lack of complicity does not mean the practice should be tolerated.

    The school board has an obligation to stop the diversion of education resources. It will not be easy, but it is their obligation nonetheless. It has an obligation to make a stand against mandated spending for the education of the children of illegal immigrants. By making that stand, the board will be standing for the children who should rightfully be in its charge. It will be standing for the lawful taxpayers who demand that the interests of their children be protected.

    The Freehold Borough school board should reject any mandate by the state or anyone else to expand its schools or expend its funds for illegal aliens. The school board should, immediately, require proof of lawful U.S. residency as a requirement for all students for admission into the schools.

    Yes, I know that federal and state law prohibits that seemingly common sense requirement. In doing so, Freehold will invite a lawsuit or two. Such a suit would likely involve an injunction to prevent the policy from being implemented. The lower federal courts, particularly in New Jersey, will grant that injunction. The Third Circuit Court of Appeals will uphold that injunction. However, if the Supreme Court were to take that case, there are not the votes to uphold the awful Constitutional embarrassment of Plyler v. Doe.

    Doe is a case that barely passed in 1982, with Justice Sandra Day O’Connor writing the stinging dissent. For those who do not know the case, it stands for the remarkable and unsupportable proposition that school-age children, here illegally, are entitled to a K-12 education.

    In the Constitutional world, there are few cases more roundly criticized than Plyler v. Doe. If overturned, the single greatest inducement for illegal aliens to enter and stay in this country will be eliminated, and Freehold will find that it has ample room to serve her lawful children.

    If the Freehold Borough school board wants to take a tough stand, on a hard issue, and call itself the champion of children, it will stand up against the silent invasion that has stripped the borough of its resources, and has misappropriated the funds of lawful residents in furtherance of illegal aliens and their allies.

    Do what’s right. Avoid the path of least resistance. It is, after all, for the children.

    Richard Kelsey is an attorney practicing commercial litigation with an international law firm. He is a frequent lecturer, writer and commentator on immigration issues. He is a former resident of Freehold Borough, and a former candidate for the Freehold Borough Council. He currently lives with his wife and three children in Arlington, Va.