New York City’s school district made a big mistake this week when it forced students at a Brooklyn high school to take classes remotely so that it could shelter almost 2,000 illegal immigrants there.
On Wednesday, Karine Jean-Pierre, the White House press secretary, said the move is “something that New York City needs to answer to.”
On Tuesday, the office of Mayor Eric Adams, who is a Democrat, said that 1,900 illegal immigrants would be moved from where they were being housed — at Floyd Bennett Field — to James Madison High School in anticipation of a heavy winter storm that was due to hit the region.
While there was no snow or ice that came to the city, multiple inches of rain did fall, and winds were in excess of 60 miles-per-hour in some sections of the city.
The migrants were being moved to the high school, which was being used as a “temporary overnight respite center.” As a result, students had to “pivot” and stay home from school on Wednesday, taking virtual classes instead.
After being pressed by a Fox News reporter during a press briefing on Wednesday, Jean-Pierre outlined what President Joe Biden’s priority was in this situation.
She responded that the city informed the White House on Tuesday that they were relocating the migrants from Floyd Bennett Field to the high school “as a precaution.” By Wednesday morning, all of those migrants had returned to their previous shelter, she said.
She added that “when it comes to education, migrants, the economy, the president deals with multiple issues all at once. That is his job.
“There are multiple things happening all at once. And as it relates to this particular question that you’re asking me about New York City, that is something that New York City needs to answer to. That is a process that they took. So, they have to answer to that.”
Many people were up in arms when New York City announced the plan to move students out of the high school so that illegal immigrants could be housed there. Parents were naturally some of the most vocal opponents of the plan, though even local politicians were outraged as well.
One such politician was state Assemblyman Michael Novakhov, who represents Brooklyn. Standing outside of the affected high school this week, he said:
“We never know what’s going to happen with the weather. They can be moved here again depending on the weather conditions. If the weather is bad again, are migrants supposed to be moved to this school again? Because schools are not the place for migrants — simple as that.”
Some parents spoke to The New York Post to communicate their disgust at the “horrible decision” that the city made. One such parent was Elina Bekker, a mom who said:
“We were concerned how will this affect those students in the future if it’s a one-time thing. But, if it’s going to be a recurring event, it’s definitely not acceptable. The school should not be used.”