Education

Bill Would Deny Tuition For Undocumented Immigrant Students

Dec 1, 2016

A newly elected state senator has filed legislation that would undo a 2014 law allowing in-state tuition for some undocumented immigrant students, potentially reopening an emotionally charged debate in the wake of Donald Trump's presidential win.

Nancy Klingener / WLRN

Florida Keys Community College established a mariculture program six years ago, after the movie "Finding Nemo" created a craze for clownfish like the title character.

But it wasn't until Mick Walsh arrived three years ago to head up the college's marine environmental technology department that the program took off.

"When I got here, we had eight pairs of parent fish and that was it," Walsh said. "And now we have eight pairs of parent fish and hundreds, hundreds of baby clownfish and many more that have also been adopted out to community members and students."

Creative Commons

New data from the Department of Education shows that students at hundreds of for-profit certificate and degree programs around the country end up earning the equivalent of less than the federal minimum wage after they graduate, even at programs that carry the possibility of tens of thousands of dollars in student debt.

Sarah Gonzalez / Stateimpact/NPR

Education Secretary John King addressed a letter to school administrators around the country Monday urging them to abandon corporal punishment of students. 

Education Secretary John King is urging governors and school leaders in states that allow student paddling to end a practice he says would be considered "criminal assault or battery" against an adult.

Students from Miami Dade College’s Homestead campus and several area high schools staged a walkout Wednesday to protest the immigration proposals of President-elect Donald Trump. The students rallied outside Homestead City Hall to push for an ordinance to declare Homestead a “Sanctuary City"  and ask administrators to make each of their schools so-called sanctuary campuses.

When the Obama administration announced last year that it would overhaul the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, or FAFSA, prospective college students (and their parents) cheered.

"Today, we're lending a hand to millions of high school students who want to go to college and who've worked hard," said Arne Duncan, who was at that time U.S. secretary of education. "We're announcing an easier, earlier FAFSA."

And it is both.

There's been lots of chatter on social media and among pundits, warning that the treatment of immigrant kids and English language learners is going to "get worse" under a Donald Trump presidency.

Some people on Twitter are even monitoring incidents in which Latino students in particular have been targeted.

But I wonder: When were these students not targeted? When did immigrant students and their families ever have it easy?

Courtesy Tampa Bay Times

The Friday night lights are shining over Skyway Park in Tampa as the Cambridge Christian School Lancers end their season undefeated with a 45 to 6 win over Carrolwood Day School.

The victory celebration then quiets down as the players and coaches march midfield to shake hand with their opponents. And as the crowd files out of the park the team gathers for a post-game prayer.

When Patricia Gentile was settling in as the new president of North Shore Community College in Massachusetts — about twenty miles north of Boston — she remembers looking out her window and seeing something strange.

"All of these cars rolling up, and tons of folks getting in and out," Gentile says, thinking about that January day a couple years ago.

"So I asked my assistant, 'What's going on down there?' "

Turns out that's where students were picked up and dropped off, but Gentile wondered why there were just so many cars.

How do you judge how good a school is? Test scores? Culture? Attendance?

In the new federal education law, states are asked to use five measures of student success. The first four are dictated by the Every Student Succeeds Act, or ESSA. Three are related to academics — like annual tests and graduation rates. The fourth measures proficiency of English language learners.

Rowan Moore Gerety / WLRN

It's 12 noon on a school day in November: 12th grader Beltran Arellanes should be in his AP government class at MAST Academy, a magnet school and one of the highest-ranked high schools in Florida. Instead, he's walking into a Donald Trump rally at Bayfront Park Amphitheater in Miami, along with his ninth grade sister Casilda.

ITT Tech materials, courtesy of Waltter Teruel

Before he moved to Miami, Waltter Teruel sold antiques and life insurance in New York. Working as a recruiter at ITT Technical Institute in Hialeah was a welcome change. “I mean, if you’re a salesperson, you have to lie through your teeth,” he said, “but in this case, it’s one of the sales where you actually don’t have to lie at some point.”

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