Sonoma County Office of Education

Dr. Steve Herrington comments on the Supreme Court’s decision to expand the public charge rule.

01/28/2020 -

Dr. Steve Herrington, Sonoma County superintendent of schools, comments on the Supreme Court’s decision to expand the public charge rule.

“I want to make clear to our community that yesterday’s ruling by the Supreme Court expanding the public charge rule does not affect public schools,” said Herrington. “Families need to know their students will still be able to access important school services and school nutrition programs without penalty.”

“Families should not be fearful of sending their children to school,” added Herrington. “Sonoma County school communities will continue to embrace and support all students and their families by providing a safe place to learn. In addition, we stand behind Sonoma County’s social services agencies who have been unfairly targeted by this discriminatory ruling.”

“This assault on legal immigration represents a sad day for America. Our country was founded, built, and strengthened by immigrants,” stated Herrington. “We value all those who come to this country seeking a better way of life.”

Under the new regulation, legal immigrants into the United States could be denied permanent residency if immigration authorities deem them “likely at any time to” enroll in any number of public benefits for more than a year. The list of benefits includes food stamps, federal housing assistance and health insurance through Medicaid. The Supreme Court’s ruling does not affect public schools, school services, or school nutrition programs.