California Dream Act
What is the Problem?
California high school graduates who have been accepted to our premier public colleges and universities may not be eligible for state financial aid.
According to the San Francisco Chronicle, there are over 25,000 undocumented students who graduate every year from high school. These students confront a difficult challenge of financing their college education because they are ineligible for any federal grants or loans and are unable to legally work, even though they attended and graduated from a California high school. "Many of these youngsters find themselves caught in a catch-22 situation. As [undocumented] immigrants, they cannot work legally. They are also effectively barred from developing academically beyond high school because of the high cost of pursuing higher education. In short, although these children have built their lives here, they have no possibility of achieving and living the American dream. What a tremendous loss for them, and what a tremendous loss to our society." – Republican U.S. Senator Orrin Hatch author of earlier versions of the federal DREAM Act
What does the CA Dream Act do?
AB 130 would allow students that meet the in-state tuition requirements to apply for and receive specified financial aid programs administered by California's public colleges and universities.
The types of aid these students would be eligible for include:
- Board of Governors (BOG) Fee Waiver, and
- Institutional Student Aid: Student aid program administered by the attending college or university (i.e. State University Grant, UC Grant)
The bills would not become operative until July 1, 2012.
Eligible students are those who may qualify for in-state tuition at public colleges and universities in California (California Education Code §68130.5) and meet ALL of the following requirements:
1. Secondary school attendance in California for three or more years; at least one year of which shall have been at a California high school.
2. Graduation from a California secondary school or attainment of the equivalent thereof.
3. If undocumented, the filing of an affidavit with the college or university stating that they have applied for a lawful immigration status or will apply as soon as they are eligible to do so.
Information based from website: http://www.californiadreamact.org/
**For more information and updates about AB 130 and AB 131 check on the website : http://www.csac.ca.gov/dream_act.asp