School nixes Arizona trip over immigration law
Highland Park (Ill.) High canceled its girls basketball team's trip to a tournament in Arizona over the state's immigration law, saying the trip "would not be aligned" with the school's "beliefs and values."
The Highland Park High School varsity basketball team has been selling cookies for months to raise money for a tournament in Arizona.
Now, after winning their first conference title in 26 years, the girls are being denied the opportunity to play in the tournament due to uncertainty over how a new Arizona law that makes it a crime to be in the country illegally will be enforced — and because the trip "would not be aligned" with the school's "beliefs and values," Assistant Superintendent Suzan Hebson told The Chicago Tribune.
Parents said there was no vote or consultation regarding the decision, which they called confusing, especially since they say no players on the team are illegal immigrants.
"I’m not sure whose values and what values and what beliefs they’re talking about, we were just going to Arizona to play basketball and our daughters were very disappointed to find out the trip had been canceled," Michael Evans, a father of one of the players, told FOXNews.com.
Evans said if for some reason a player was worried about her safety, she could always opt to stay home from the December tournament without forcing the entire team to do the same.
"This tournament was voluntary, so students could decide not to go if they thought they were at some sort of risk of some sort of harm to themselves, but to penalize all the other girls because of some potential risk? I don't understand it," he said.
Evans said he also failed to understand why the school allowed so many other trips, but not this one.
"The school has sent children to China, they’ve sent children to South America, they’ve sent children to the Czech Republic, but somehow Arizona is more unsafe for them than those places," he said.
"The beliefs and values of China are apparently aligned since they approved that trip," he added.