Plyler’s Legacy: Immigration and Higher Education in the 21st Century
14 Pages Posted: 27 Jan 2012
Date Written: 2011
The debate over whether or not the undocumented should be able to attend school and then enroll in college has become a more sustained controversy: should undocumented students be able to attend public colleges and universities and, if so, should they pay in-state rates? Because this issue is inescapably tied to a Supreme Court decision almost three decades old, Plyler v. Doe, we must first turn to the 1982 holding that undocumented schoolchildren can attend elementary and secondary public schools without regard to their immigration status. As scholars have pored over the many treatments of Plyler, it has become possible to see its kaleidoscopic nature and thus come to appreciate anew its significance.
This essay in an Introduction to the special issue of the Michigan State Law Review (Volume 2011, Issue no. 2) that contained several articles on the subject.
Keywords: Immigrant education, Residency requirements, Postsecondary education, College tuition, Undocumented immigrant students, Undocumented college students
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