In keeping with continued advocacy for the success of all of our students, we have kept a watchful eye on immigration news that might affect our students and community. In the past week, there have been two significant actions regarding the federal DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) program.
Late last week, we learned DACA will remain in effect, just as it has been for the past five years. The news about DACA was part of a longer statement by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security on rescinding DAPA (Deferred Action for Parents of American and Lawful Permanent Residence.) While DAPA was never implemented, its rescission does signal that Washington is evaluating a wide range of immigration policies and practices, as anticipated.
Retaining DACA is good news for many of our students. At Pima Community College and other Arizona colleges, DACA also allowed students, often called “Dreamers,” to attend at in-state tuition rates. In-state tuition is especially important to students and families paying out of pocket.
However, whether Arizona law allows in-state tuition for DACA students has been the subject of legal action since 2013. Yesterday, we learned that the Arizona Court of Appeals overturned a 2015 decision by a trial court judge that allowed in-state tuition, concluding that Arizona law does not permit in-state tuition for Dreamers.
We currently are reviewing the decision and what it could ultimately mean for PCC students. We may not know for the next few weeks whether there will be a further appeal to the Arizona State Supreme Court.
In the meantime, there will be no change to tuition rates for DACA students at Pima Community College. Students can find information about financial resources and other support on our website.
Pima Community College remains fully supportive of our DACA students and, indeed, all of our students. PCC is committed to providing a supportive and inclusive environment, celebrating and recognizing our richly diverse community of learners.
We will continue to monitor developments and share important updates.