Supporting Unaccompanied Immigrant Youth in U.S. Schools

with Laura Gardner, MSW

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In 2021, we are experiencing another large wave of unaccompanied immigrant children crossing the Southern border. These youth are in the custody of the Office of Refugee Resettlement and then reunify with family members and other sponsors in our communities. What brings these youth to the U.S., what happens when they get here, and how do they end up in our classrooms? What type of education, if any, do they receive while in ORR custody and how can we support these students when they enroll in our schools?

In this 3 hour workshop, participants will:

  • describe who unaccompanied immigrant youth are, including basic demographic characteristics and their reasons for coming to the U.S.

  • examine the Flores agreement and the role of Department of Homeland Security and the Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR) in the lives of unaccompanied immigrant youth

  • analyze what happens to children between the border and your classroom, including what is involved in locating a sponsor

  • explore the social-emotional, educational, and legal experiences of these youth as they reunify with family members, enroll in and adjust to school, and await their immigration hearings

  • and develop strategies for supporting unaccompanied immigrant students in your classroom and school.

Notes about Registration:

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  • We also accept purchase orders for payment by invoice. Please email Jessica ( with the information you need from us to process the PO.  Once the PO has been set up, Jessica will register the attendees manually.