San Jose High Schoolers Walk Out Of Class To Support DACA, Dreamers

SAN JOSE (KPIX 5) — About 100 students and DACA recipients walked out of their classrooms to join a demonstration at Hillview Park in East San Jose to show their support for DACA.

One group of students from James Lick High School in East San Jose left their classrooms and walked for miles to the park.

“I’ll probably get in trouble but who cares, I’d rather stand up for my people,” said Allan Diaz, a James Lick student.

The Superintendent of the East Side Union High School District said the walkout came as a surprise to administrators.

“We may follow them, to make sure they’re peaceful and to make sure they are not in the streets,” said Chris Funk. Funk said the students will face detention for missing classes.

“We want to make sure they have a safe place to develop their student voice, but at the same time they have the responsibility to be in school and we have the responsibility to hold them accountable for that.”

Students and their supporters urged the U.S. Supreme Court to preserve DACA and allow more than 800,000 young people whose parents brought them to the U.S. when they were children to stay in the U.S. and avoid deportation.

“Every day it’s scary. You wake up and don’t know if that’s the day that your life is going to get taken away from you,” said Ari Zarate, a high school senior and DACA recipient, said she’s been in the U.S. since she was six months old. She’s now afraid of being deported.

“I really want to go to college, but thinking about me not being able to be there for my family just breaks my heart. It’s really hard with work and school and thinking I’ll be sent back somewhere where I don’t know,” she said.

Zarate is a dreamer and she says her dream is to be a teacher.

“If this program I’ve worked so hard for is taken away from me, I would just feel empty,” she said.

The Supreme Court heard oral arguments Tuesday in favor and against DACA. A decision is expected sometime this spring.