UCEA is alarmed by the recent executive order placing a travel restriction on individuals from seven predominantly Muslim nations seeking to come into this country. As an organization committed to improving education for ALL children through the development of equity-oriented leaders, and with international reach and representation, we know that some programs, faculty, and graduate students are immediately affected by this policy. The executive order does little to address the global humanitarian crisis experienced by refugees nor the broader issues of international security. It does, however, have severe repercussions on the exchange of research, international collaboration, and the free flow of ideas, all of which are vital to our university communities and scholarly pursuits.
Equally important, this executive order directly impacts Muslim communities in the United States and, subsequently, the schools and educators that serve them. The fear and uncertainty created by this policy destabilizes homes and schools as they attempt to make sense of the implications on families and children. Children, of any religious denomination or who have no religious affiliation, must feel safe and welcome in our schools. School leaders play a central role in developing inclusive cultures in their schools while mitigating the external forces that foster division.
This executive order has sparked legal action and protests. We urge our members to express their concerns with their university administrators and local/state legislators. Let them know how this policy is affecting you, your colleagues, and the communities with whom you work. In keeping with our mission, we also encourage faculty to engage their colleagues and students in discussions of the role of leadership and academia in developing research that informs and makes a difference to our collective pursuit of justice and equity for all our children, teachers, and schools. Let us be more engaged and committed to teaching and scholarship that addresses the critical challenges facing students, educators, schools, universities, and communities across the globe.
Finally, for more information on the executive order you may wish to refer to the following resources:
National Immigration Law Center https://www.nilc.org/issues/education/
American Immigration Council http://immigrationimpact.com
Center for American-Islamic Relations http://www.cair.com
Atlantic: What Trump’s Executive Order Does and Doesn’t Do
Penn Race & Equity Center: National Teach-In on the Presidential Executive Order
As stated in our mission, UCEA is a community of learners that values:
A Learning and social development for ALL children
B Contributions of educational leaders to the success of all children
C Systematic inquiry that is relevant, integral, and essential to the success of children, schools, and school leaders
D Quality and excellence in the preparation of school leaders and professors
E Collaboration with schools, other educational and service agencies, and professional organizations
F Professional community, collegiality and respect for diverse perspectives
G Educational and social policy that positively support the learning and development of all children
H Diversity, equity, and social justice in all educational organizations