California guarantees K-12 education to everyone, regardless of immigration status. In 1986, Leticia A., a high school graduate, was the main plaintiff in a lawsuit in Alameda County pushing to let undocumented students pay in-state college tuition. In 1991 A state court ruled in her favor, setting a precedent for other undocumented graduates.

Since then, CHIRLA has made it a priority to fight against any laws that discriminate against undocumented students. We do this by engaging students in the civic fight at the legislative level as well as  educate them on measures that can ease their access to education and a path to citizenship.

CHIRLA continues to fight for full access to quality education at the high school and college levels. We fight for the day where undocumented students will be formally recognized as part of this nation.

Our Wins:

  • AB 540, which lets undocumented students pay in-state tuition at California public colleges. It was one of the first initiatives in the nation to open college doors to undocumented youth.
  • AB 130, which allows students who meet the AB540 criteria under (California Education Code 68130.5(a)) to apply and receive non-state funded scholarships for public colleges and universities.
  • AB 131, which allows students who meet the AB540 criteria to apply for and receive state-funded grants, community college fee waivers, Cal Grant and Chafee Grant.
  • AB 1645, which requires California Colleges and California State University, and requests the University of California, to designate a Dreamer Resource Liaison on each campus to assist AB 540 and undocumented Students.
  • SB 354, which expands the California Dream Loan Program to include eligible undocumented and AB 540 students who are pursuing a graduate degree.
  • AB 1895, which allows students who attend a participating University of California or California State University to receive a loan.