Access to Education: Challenges and Opportunities for Immigrant Students
Kevin Lindsey (Former Staff)Children of Immigrants Education Racial Equity
It is critical that the specific needs of children and youth are considered in the ongoing immigration debate and that particular attention is paid to their educational opportunities. Of the approximately 5.5 million children of immigrants in the U.S., around 1 million are undocumented. Many of these children entered the country at a young age, have been educated in American schools, and have grown up speaking English and embracing American culture. While undocumented children in grades K-12 are legally allowed to attend school, they often face challenges that their peers do not. Additionally, undocumented status becomes a significant barrier after youth leave high school. With an estimated 65,000 undocumented students graduating from American high schools every year, this is an important issue not only for these youth, but for the entire country. This brief offers an overview of the challenges and opportunities that immigrant children face when pursuing an education.