California Supreme Court Unanimously Upholds In-State Tuition Policy for Undocumented Foreign Nationals

College 2.jpgIn a well reasoned opinion, the California Supreme Court upheld a California state statute that allows for high school students, who have attended at least three years of high school in California, to receive in-state tuition prices from California public colleges and universities. This ruling is a great victory for proponents of such laws in ten states that allow for in-state tuition pricing for such students as well as for fundamental fairness and justice to the children of undocumentaed workers who would have been harmmed had this case been decided in favor of the opposition.

The statute at issue, which was intended to bring children of undocumented immigrants into the educational and societal mainstream, ties the in-state tuition rate to the place where the student had attended the last three years of high school instead of basing in-state tuition to the residence of the child in the state.

Advocates who argued against the bill cited to federal law which does not allow for undocumented aliens to be awarded governmental benefits which are tied to residence. However, because the law did not tie the benefit of in-state tuition to the child’s residence, the federal law was deemed by the court to not have been violated.

The ruling also dealt a blow to noted anti-illegal immigration activist, Kris Kobach, who had played an integral role in filing and arguing this lawsuit as well in the drafting of Senate Bill 1070 in Arizona.