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Do illegal immigrants get in-state tuition?

Every parent wishes their child well when venturing out into the world. Whether to a college or career, each individual looking to better themselves and likely their community should be awarded the same benefits. However, in Georgia many college-bound students are being hit with higher out-of-state tuition because they were brought here illegally by their parents.

The Georgia Supreme Court will consider arguments over tuition as it applies to the children of illegal immigrants and state citizens. Currently, tuition for the children of illegal immigrants is considered an out-of-state tuition and subject to being substantially higher than that of Georgia residents. For these students, brought here by parents or relatives without proper documentation, tuition can be a make-or-break aspect of higher education.

The argument posed is that under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program initiated by the Obama administration, these students should be considered residents of Georgia and not subject to a tuition hike. Supporting evidence shows that the state of Georgia is actually hindering itself with its current policy.

Georgia Budget and Policy Institute analysts offer information on 27 other states that offer partial in-state tuition for children of illegal immigrants. According to the analysts, the fact that other states offer this tuition cut will make them more attractive to students. This will lead to those states becoming a more diverse and challenging market for college graduates than Georgia. Concerns are that this offset of attractiveness will leave Georgia in the dust and keep other states growing their workforce.

Higher education is a huge concern for all parents and especially for parents that have come to the U.S. to give their children a good education. While wanting the best for our children is a noble cause, finding out that it may lead to them starting their adult life with substantial educational debt is upsetting. If you or a loved one has been subject to educational discrimination, you may benefit by speaking to an experienced immigration attorney.

Source: 901.1 WABE, "Analyst: Higher Tuition For Immigrant Students Hurts Ga.," Sept. 29, 2015

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