NYC Moves Thousands Of Illegal Immigrants To High School Gym Due To High Winds, Forcing Students To Switch To Remote Learning
NEW YORK, NEW YORK - JANUARY 04: Recently arrived migrants walk from their temporary tent shelters at Floyd Bennett Field, a former airfield in Brooklyn, on January 04, 2024 in New York City. The isolated location on a road that leads to the Atlantic Ocean has forced migrants to depend on limited sources of transportation to get to schools, work or other locations. The 2,000-bed shelter, which opened in November to house migrant families, was chosen after the Eric Adams administration said hotels and other places of shelter had hit capacity, after New York became the main destination for buses from Texas.
Spencer Platt/Getty Images

City officials in New York City are evacuating around 2,000 illegal immigrants from a tent shelter set up on an airfield due to high winds, and moving them to a high school gym.

The illegal immigrants are being transported from Brooklyn’s Floyd Bennett Field to James Madison High School on Tuesday as the city braces for a storm that could produce torrential rain and 70-mph winds, the New York Post reported. Students were dismissed early on Tuesday as city officials were preparing the school for the migrants, and classes will be remote on Wednesday, according to NYC Republican Councilwoman Inna Vernikov.

“They told us we had to get everything out by 5 [p.m.],” gym teacher Robyn Levy told the Post. “They sent us the email at 6 in the morning. I don’t know when we’ll be able to [be] back.”

“What I want to know is why here?” Levy asked. “Why not send them somewhere where students wouldn’t be disrupted, where students[‘] learning wouldn’t be disrupted?”

City Hall spokeswoman Kayla Mamelak said the migrant relocation to the high school is “until any weather conditions that may arise have stabilized and the facility is once again fit for living.”

“To be clear, this relocation is a proactive measure being taken out of an abundance of caution to ensure the safety and wellbeing of individuals working and living at the center,” said Mamelak.

New York began placing illegal immigrants in tents at the airfield in November after Governor Kathy Hochul negotiated a deal with the Biden administration to allow the state to use the site to house illegal immigrants who have flooded the Big Apple over the past two years.

Vernikov blasted city and state officials on Tuesday, saying, “Our schools are not migrant shelters!”


“Our public schools are meant to be places of learning and growth for our children, and were never intended to be shelters or facilities for emergency housing,” Vernikov said in a press release. “There are approximately 4,000 students who attend Madison High School. Their parents are rightfully concerned. Our constituents who live in the vicinity are concerned for their safety and wellbeing. This will agitate local residents, disrupt the entire school environment, and place a tremendous burden on our families, students, school administrators and staff.”

It’s not the first time New York City students’ education has been affected by the illegal immigration crisis. At the beginning of the school year, around 21,000 illegal immigrant children flooded New York City schools for the first day of classes, forcing one school to place kids in a different facility because it reached building capacity.

New York City Mayor Eric Adams also cut the city’s education budget by more than $1 billion over the next two years to deal with illegal immigration.

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