By Matt O’Brien
Three months after President Barack Obama declared their mass arrival an “urgent humanitarian situation,” thousands of children who fled Central America are about to take a seat in U.S. classrooms for the first time.
Some Bay Area schools are bracing for an influx. Others don’t know what to expect or haven’t thought about it. The Oakland Unified School District, more prepared than most, is anticipating so many newcomers that it is hiring a privately-funded consultant to cushion their landing.
“Moving anywhere is one of the most stressful things any kid can do. Compound that with moving countries, moving cultures,” said Carmelita Reyes, co-principal of Oakland International High School. “It’s the most stressful situation. And you’re 15. It’s incredibly hard.”
Many are landing in cities that already had a large Central American community, such as Oakland, San Francisco, Richmond, Concord and Redwood City.