Metro State Considers Tuition Break For Illegal Immigrants

Discount Could Save Some Students Nearly 60 Percent

Metropolitan State College of Denver is considering a tuition break for illegal immigrant students.

The proposal being considered by an advisory board on Wednesday would cut tuition rates by more than half.

According to the Denver Post, students would have to prove they are high school graduates and have lived in the state for at least three years.

Out-of-state students and illegal immigrants currently pay the full tuition price of $7,992.60. In-state tuition is $2,896.20. According to the newspaper, the rate for illegal immigrants could be $3,358.30, a discount of about 58 percent.

State Lawmakers Have Killed Similar Measure Six Times

Colorado lawmakers rejected a similar proposal earlier this year. Democratic legislators said immigrant students deserve a chance to continue their education at an affordable rate because the state has spent money educating them in the K-12 system. Opponents questioned whether the bill encouraged illegal behavior, instead of punishing it.

It was the sixth time the state legislature had considered what type of tuition illegal immigrants should pay. If it had passed, it would have been up to colleges whether to participate.

An analysis by legislative staff said as many as 500 students could have qualified for the third tuition category.

Thirteen states -- including Texas, California, Illinois and Connecticut -- have passed legislation granting in-state tuition for immigrant students, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

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