No In-State Tuition For DACA

Karlie Dibell, Contributor

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The Arizona Supreme Court made a decision to side with an Arizona Court of Appeals’ ruling that DACA students will no longer receive in-state tuition and will have to pay out-of-state fees for schooling. It has been made official that the state’s laws do not allow colleges and universities to grant in-state tuition to students without permanent legal status. The latest ruling [April 9th] stated that the out-of-state tuition will cost triple the amount of the in-state fee. It has been said that this will create a barrier to education for the DACA students who would like to go to college. The ruling is bad for business, according to a statement issued by the Arizona Hispanic Chamber of Commerce.

“The state’s more than 40,000 Dreamers, like their families, pump tens of millions of dollars into our economy every year,” according to the chamber’s statement. “DACA recipients can legally work and attend college in the state where they and their families pay taxes, and they deserve in-state tuition. This ruling speaks to the desperate need for Congress and the White House to pass a Dream Act that addresses this issue once and for all. America is made stronger, economically and culturally, by immigrants, and our Dreamers are part of a vital investment in our nation’s future.”

DACA students have been able to receive lower in-state tuition rates at ASU, U of A, and NAU since 2015. According to a local paper, the in-state rate for undergraduate students at Arizona State University is $10,640, compared to $26,470 for non-resident students. At Maricopa Community Colleges, the in-state rate is $86 per credit hour versus $241 for non-residents. This affects around 2,000 people who in the DACA program. Matt Hasson, a spokesman for the Maricopa County Community Colleges District, said the district was disappointing. “This ruling is troubling for the 2,000 DACA students currently enrolled in Maricopa Community Colleges,” he said in a statement. “During the past five years, more than 600 DACA students earned an associate’s degree or a certificate from one of our colleges and are making valuable contributions to the health of our economy.”

A lower court in 2015 rejected the attorney general’s contention that a lower tuition violated a voter-approved 2006 law known as Proposition 300 that does not allow public benefits for anyone living in Arizona without legal immigration status. Many of the young people in DACA had explained that their school plans would be abolished if they lost that access to the lower in-state tuition.

Edder Diaz Martinez, a DACA recipient himself and a founding member of Undocumented Students for Education Equity, a group representing immigrant students at Arizona State University that: “Not only does this put education out of reach for most students, many will simply drop out from this disappointing decision.” Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich said it is “about time someone held the state’s colleges and universities that were providing in-state tuition rates to DACA recipients accountable.” He added: “What makes this country unique and great … is because the rule of law means something.” “While people can disagree what the law should be, I hope we all can agree that the attorney general must enforce the law as it is, not as we want it to be,” Brnovich said in a statement.

Sources:

http://www.breitbart.com/big-government/2018/04/09/az-ends-state-tuition-daca-recipients-unanimous-state-sup-ct-ruling/

https://www.bizjournals.com/phoenix/news/2018/04/09/az-supreme-court-no-in-state-tuition-for-daca.html

http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2018/04/11/arizona-court-says-dreamers-no-longer-eligible-for-in-state-tuition.html

https://www.nbcnews.com/news/latino/arizona-supreme-court-no-state-tuition-daca-college-students-n864106

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