OKLAHOMA CITY – Growing fears of immigration authorities after a record-setting sweep rounded up hundreds in Mississippi on the first day of school have Oklahoma City Public Schools authorities planning for the possibility here in the Sooner State.
The raid in Mississippi left a number of children sobbing, wondering where their parents went after nobody was there to pick them up.
The threatened raids have rattled immigrant communities including those in the Metro, sparking conversations within the schools about what to do if it happens here.
It’s video gripping the nation. An 11-year-old tearfully begging for her father’s release from an ICE detention center in Mississippi. It’s also grabbing attention from Oklahoma City Public Schools’ Superintendent Dr. Sean McDaniel. “That could be us. I mean, something like that could happen in our backyard.”
During the annual state of the school meeting, someone asked about the district’s efforts to keep immigrant students safe.
“We are looking at other urban districts who are facing similar challenges. We are trying to create frameworks for policy that will help guide us.”
McDaniel citing their number one goal is the safety and education of the children.
“We want to be able to recognize and respond if something were to happen in our school district.”
He said the district hasn’t had any specific problems that prompted this conversation, calling it a proactive approach as ICE activity increases across the country.
“It is a work in progress. We are all on high alert and it is something we talk about frequently.”
We reached out to different organizations throughout the city who may offer a safe haven for children. They all tell News 4 they have not been contacted by the district for assistance.