Presented by Alexa Costa, Celia Haro, Elizabeth Sepulveda, Heather Cooke, and Jen Renner
The DREAM (Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors) Act can be seen as a piece of bipartisan legislation headed by Utah’s Republican Senator, Orrin Hatch and Illinois’s Democratic Senator, Richard Durbin.
Since the policy makers are part of the US Senate they have federal jurisdiction, but the policy is being put into place at the state level. The policy is aimed at aiding undocumented immigrants in gaining a college education. California’s version of the DREAM Act is the combination of two assembly bills: AB 130 and AB 131. It applies to students who attended a California high school for at least three years and have graduated from a California high school with a diploma or equivalent.
The DREAM Act will help undocumented students obtain in-state tuition, access to federal and state grants, scholarships, and loans. Under the DREAM Act, students need to have entered the US before the age of 16, have an American high school diploma or GED equivalent, residency in the US for at least five consecutive years, and must be between the ages of 12 and 25 during the time the bill was enacted.
The Democrats have supported the passage of the DREAM Act since it was first introduced, but Republicans have historically voted against it.
The DREAM Act would create more eligible immigrant voters and would increase the state’s economy by providing a larger and more highly trained workforce. The majority of those who qualify for the DREAM act have grown up in the educational system of the US.
Check this article out to get a better insight into the DREAM Act.
This is a very important and timely topic, here are some discussion questions to get you thinking!
What are your thoughts on the DREAM Act? Are you for or against the DREAM Act? Why?
How does the DREAM Act ensure the funds used towards undocumented students is going to benefit California and the nation in the long run?
Would the passing of the DREAM Act encourage more illegal immigration?
In what ways will the passing of the DREAM Act allow undocumented students to “ give back to America”
In what ways do undocumented students highlight the fact that for many students, working hard is simply not enough.