Public set to learn more about refugees in school system

On March 9, W.A.R.M. will present another discussion open to the public about refugees. (WNG File Photo)

WESTFIELD, Mass. (The Westfield News) – Another information session about refugees coming into the local area will take place on Thursday March 9 at the First Congregational Church in Westfield from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m.

Hosted by W.A.R.M. (Welcoming and Assisting Refugee Ministry), the discussion will be focused on making the public more aware about the assimilation of refugee children into the schools system. The event will be titled “New Americans in Our Schools – a look at the rich benefits and challenges of refugee and immigrant children entering our schools.”

Shirley Anderson, a member of W.A.R.M., says that the talk will also help any incoming refugee children learn about the school system and how to adapt.

“They simply want to live their lives,” said Anderson. “They’ll contribute best if they are educated.”

Denise Ruszala, the Director of Assessment and Accountability in the Westfield Public School District, will be the guest speaker.

Ruszala will be able to speak about any experiences she has had with meeting refugees or assisting them in the school district.

Anderson hopes that the event will be a success and a positive experience for the incoming refugees.

“I think that it’s a wonderful thing for them to be a part of the community,” said Anderson.

Adults and teenagers are all encouraged to attend the event.