Schmudget Blog
— filed under: , ,

Investing in Dreamers is the Right Move

Posted by taral at Jan 31, 2014 06:50 PM |
Filed under: , ,

By Elena Hernandez -- The passage of SB 6523 has made the dream of higher education a much closer reality for a generation of youth across our state.  Policymakers are taking steps in the right direction by improving access to higher education for all Washingtonians.  In so doing, they will be ensuring that our state has the well-educated, highly skilled workforce it needs to be competitive in today’s economy.

SB 6523 is nearly identical to the bill that the House passed (HB 1817) on the first day of the legislative session.  Both bills would ensure that young undocumented youth (Dreamers) who work hard, earn good grades, and graduate from a Washington state high school have the same opportunities to apply for state need grant aid as their peers.

Dreamers do not qualify for federal or state financial aid, therefore finances are the main barrier to pursuing higher education.   As a result, only 49 percent of Dreamers that graduate from high school go on to college, a much lower rate than their peers.   Both SB 6523 and HB 1817 increase access to financial aid, making higher education more affordable.  This increases the likelihood that Dreamers will attend college, and also improve their persistence once enrolled (see graph below).



Stay tuned next week for our latest policy brief to learn more about how the Washington State Dream Act will benefit our state and provide a positive return on investment.

Document Actions

Budget Beat!

We host regular Budget Beat webinars throughout legislative session to bring you updates and breaking news from Olympia and timely policy analysis. Join us on Friday, June 23, for a Budget Beat about federal budget proposals, featuring Louisa Warren of the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities. And visit our YouTube channel to watch our previous Budget Beats. 

Testimonies in Olympia

To advance our legislative priorities, the Budget & Policy Center team is in the state capitol throughout session testifying on a wide range of bills. Watch our recent testimonies on TVW:
Misha TVW

View Our School Funding Plenary 

Roxana_BMC_plenary_2016View the Budget Matters 2016 conference plenary, "What's at Stake in the 2017-2019 Budget: Funding McCleary and Beyond." Moderated by Ann Dornfeld of KUOW, the plenary features Nathan Gibbs-Bowling, the 2016 Washington State Teacher of the Year; Lew Moore of the Washington Research Council; Roxana Norouzi of OneAmerica; and Sen. Christine Rolfes. The plenary starts after an intro by Executive Director Misha Werschkul and an intro video by Gov. Inslee.