NAACP Backs Connecticut Woman Arrested for Illegally Enrolling Son in School

by
April 27, 2011

By JESSICA HOPPER, ABC News

The NAACP is stepping in to help Tanya McDowell, the Connecticut mother arrested for allegedly sending her son to a school outside of her district.

McDowell will be arraigned Wednesday on charges that she stole educational services from Norwalk Public Schools by allegedly lying about her home address.

Tanya McDowell, 33, was arrested April 15 and charged with first degree grand larceny for allegedly stealing $15,686 in educational services from Norwalk Public Schools. Her 6-year-old son was enrolled in Brookside Elementary School in Norwalk, Conn., from September of last year until January of this year.

“The NAACP doesn’t like that they’re trying to attack somebody whose poor and doesn’t have a good support system,” said Scot X. Esdaile, president of the Connecticut State Conference of the NAACP. “This is discrimination.”

McDowell claims that she’s homeless and was floating between a homeless shelter, a friend’s apartment in Norwalk and a home in Bridgeport when she registered her son for school. McDowell registered her son under her babysitter’s address in Norwalk. McDowell told The Daily Norwalk that she simply wanted the best education for her son.

Under federal law, children can continue to attend classes in a school district where they began their education if the family was homeless.

Norwalk Mayor Richard A. Moccia refused to talk to ABC News, but defended the arrest to other media outlets.

To read more, visit: http://abcnews.go.com/US/tanya-mcdowell-case-naacp-appoints-lawyer-connecticut-woman/story?id=13462495

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