Manual El Libro de Los Ángeles (Jesús Moreno® nº 3) (Spanish Edition)

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Reindl, director of state policy analysis at the American Association of State Colleges and Universities. Like Mr. Salazar, Gabriel who asked that his last name not be used because he fears repercussions if he publicly reveals his immigration status thought Lee High School would be the end of his academic career. Then one day David Johnston, the school's college counselor, cornered him between classes. He wanted to know why Gabriel, now 21, had not taken the SAT.

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Today Gabriel is a sophomore majoring in social work at Texas Southern University. He is one of many improbable success stories at Lee, an inner-city high school where 95 percent of the 2, students receive free or reduced-cost lunches. A quarter are illegal immigrants, whose families crossed the border without documents or overstayed a visa.

Ninety-four percent are members of minority groups. Last year 23 percent of Mr. Johnston's seniors went on to a four-year college; an additional 31 percent headed for a community or technical college. Undocumented immigrants have been a presence in American schools since the U. Supreme Court ruled in , in Plyler v.

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Doe, that all children, regardless of immigration status, were entitled to a free elementary and secondary education. The next generation fills Mr. Johnston's counseling center, researching college options or refining admissions essays on a half-dozen computers. To make higher education a reality for as many of Lee's students as possible, Mr. Johnston compiles extensive profiles of each senior, including academic standing, financial means, and immigration status. He is, in his own word, "creative" in devising ways for Lee's graduates to go on to college.

A future teacher may be directed to cosmetology school, a moneymaking detour that will make four-year college financially feasible one day. Hispanic students, who make up 77 percent of Lee's student body, may end up at historically black colleges, which are eager to bestow full scholarships on Mr. Johnston's academic superstars. These days, when Mr.

Johnston's telephone rings, the parents and teachers on the other end of the line are often from high schools hundreds of miles from Houston seeking advice on Texas' tuition break for illegal immigrants. Johnston's expertise in the law is known through his effort to put the legislation into place and through interviews he has given to the state's Spanish-language news media.

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Both Mr. Johnston and his counterpart in the Austin school district, Alejandra Rincon, say that even three years after the measure became law, eligible students, particularly in rural districts, are failing to take advantage of the benefit. Many simply don't know it exists; those who do lack an informed guide. Rincon says.

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Navigating the admissions and financial-aid process for illegal immigrants "requires some knowledge," she says. In Texas and the other seven states, outreach has been on an ad hoc basis. Information is featured prominently in the admissions material of some colleges and in the fine print of others. In many instances, nonprofit organizations, like Kansas City's El Centro social-service group, have taken the lead, reaching out to high-school guidance counselors, college recruiters, and religious congregations. And while some institutions, like Oklahoma City Community College, are focusing on students in middle school or younger in their recruitment efforts, staff members at other institutions, like the administrator at one Texas college who initially refused to provide in-state tuition to a student because he lacked proper immigration documents, remain unversed in the laws.

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Immigration status isn't the only obstacle for these students. Even with reduced tuition rates, a college education may be unattainable for families trying to get by on minimum-wage jobs. Federal law forbids illegal immigrant students from receiving federal loans and grants; work-study jobs are also out of the question. Of the eight states with in-state tuition laws on their books, only two, Texas and Oklahoma, offer state financial aid to illegal immigrants. A third, Utah, allows the students to qualify for only one of its aid programs. Because of their lower cost, community colleges tend to far outpace four-year institutions in enrolling undocumented immigrants.

Twenty-two of the 30 students enrolled this fall under Kansas' new law are attending two-year colleges. And thinking a college education was out of their reach, many of these students are academically unprepared for college, higher-education officials say.

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They have not taken classes like calculus, and many attend poor, understaffed urban schools that do not offer the variety of AP courses of their suburban counterparts. Olivas, a University of Houston law professor who helped write the Texas law. In some states, specific provisions in the laws may depress enrollment.

Oklahoma, for instance, collects data on undocumented immigrant students, and college officials say that discourages some eligible students from applying to college for fear of publicly revealing their status. State officials say the data will be used only to monitor the success of the law. Still, Gloria Cardenas Barton, registrar and dean of admissions at Oklahoma City Community College, admits to some unease as she separates the roughly 85 qualifying immigrant students into a distinct category in the college computer system.

Those fears are not without basis. In , after Jesus Apodaca, an year-old illegal immigrant from Colorado, was quoted in a newspaper article about the fight for in-state tuition benefits there, U. Thomas G. Tancredo, a Republican, tried to have Mr. Apodaca and his family deported. Partly in response to the Apodaca case, Colorado's General Assembly earlier this year considered legislation blocking public colleges from charging in-state tuition to students in the state illegally.

Although the Colorado bill died, there seems to be a push back to offering resident tuition to illegal immigrants in other states. In addition to the Kansas court challenge, some Arizona lawmakers hope to build on the success of a recent ballot initiative that denies public benefits to illegal immigrants by promoting legislation to block the state from offering college tuition breaks. The California Republican Assembly, a conservative organization, is working to collect enough signatures to put a proposition on the ballot prohibiting people not in that state legally from qualifying for any government aid.

Even so, the majority of the 21 states that have considered resident-tuition measures have recently sought to extend the benefit to illegal immigrants.

Only two states, Mississippi and Alaska, have forbidden public colleges from spending state funds on tuition benefits for immigrants without legal documents. One other state, Virginia, passed legislation prohibiting illegal immigrants from receiving resident tuition, but it was vetoed by Gov.

Mark R. Warner, a Democrat. While in-state tuition proposals that deal with immigrant students are likely to be introduced again when legislatures convene early next year, many states are waiting for action by the federal government. Congress recessed this year without taking action on the Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors, known as the Dream Act, which would make students who live in the country for at least five years eligible for federal student aid. States would have the option to provide in-state tuition benefits under the proposal.

Most critically, the Dream Act would permit qualified students to become temporary legal residents, putting them on the path to permanent legal status. The Dream Act's sponsor, Sen. Orrin G. Hatch, Republican of Utah, is expected to reintroduce the measure next year, but it is unclear how the legislation will fare. Groups on both sides are waiting to see how the Bush administration, which has been publicly silent, weighs in on the bill.

Unless the Dream Act is passed, illegal immigrant students and their families are making "a leap of faith," says Josh Bernstein, a senior policy analyst at the National Immigration Law Center.