Ottumwa DACA recipient speaks out at school board meeting

DACA recipient Graciela Rivera, 21, shares her concern for students at the Ottumwa School Board Monday/KTVO

A DACA recipient spoke out at Monday’s school board meeting.

She was with a group of community members who wanted to know how the district plans to create a safe learning environment for students enrolled in the program.

Many are on edge after President Donald Trump announced his plans to end DACA last week.

Including 21-year-old Graciela Rivera, who told the board she worked hard to get where she is now, and would hate to lose what she’s earned.

“I just recently bought a house, I got a car, thanks to that program, so I’m one of those people who is afraid to have that taken away from me,” Rivera said.

Rivera is an Ottumwa High School graduate. Her heart goes out to the DACA students still enrolled in the district.

School board member Nancy Manson and vice president Leisa Walker indicated they would like to move forward with a plan that accommodates these students.

Superintendent Nicole Kooiker recommends turning to legal counsel, when developing a plan and guidelines.

Board members tabled the issue for now, and hope to make a decision at the next meeting.

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