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Peabody Award-winner Trey Kay brings us stories exploring all sides of the cultural issues that too often divide us.

Immigrant Children Fighting for the Right to Learn and the American Dream

Fighting to Learn - Image
Jo Napolitano
Immigrant Khadidja Issa was the litigant in a landmark lawsuit that established rights for immigrants seeking to access public education in American schools.

America is seen as a land of opportunities and education for all, but a group of young refugees in Pennsylvania had to challenge the local school district to access their schooling.

Lancaster, Pennsylvania, school officials first said the six refugees, aged 17 to 21, were too old for public school programs. Only after a lawsuit and protracted negotiations, were the students placed in classes for English language learners.

Us & Them host Trey Kay speaks with Jo Napolitano the author of a new book, “The School I Deserve,” which follows this case. He also has a conversation with Khadidja Isaa, one of the refugees who fought for her education.

For more information about Jo Napolitano’s book  The School I Deserve — Six Young Refugees and Their Fight for Equality in America.

Also, check out Napolitano’s web site at: https://www.jonapolitano.com

This episode of Us & Them is presented with support from the Claude Worthington Benedum Foundation, the West Virginia Humanities Council and the CRC Foundation.

Subscribe to Us & Them on Apple Podcasts, NPR One, RadioPublic, Spotify, Stitcher and beyond. You also can listen to Us & Them on WVPB Radio — tune in on the fourth Thursday of every month at 8 p.m., with an encore presentation on the following Saturday at 3 p.m.

Jo Napolitano - photo
Jo Napolitano
Jo Napolitano has more than twenty years of journalism experience at The New York Times, Chicago Tribune, and Newsday.
Khadidjah in the classroom
Jo Napolitano
Immigrant Khadidja Issa in the classroom at McCaskey High School in Lancaster, PA.
Khadidjah hugging her mother after graduation.
Jo Napolitano
Khadidjah Issa hugging her mother after her graduation from McCaskey High School in Lancaster, PA.
Trey and Khadidjah
Trey Kay
Trey Kay visiting Khadidjah Issa at her home in Lancaster, PA.

Host of Us & Them/Independent Producer, tkay@wvpublic.org, @Trey_Kay
Brad is a contributor to the Us & Them podcast

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