A U.S. District Judge ruled that students at Florida’s public colleges and universities can’t be charged out-of-state tuition because their parents are in the U.S. illegally. The state’s policy of charging U.S. citizens with Florida residency who are unable to prove that their parents have legal immigrant status up to three times as much as other Florida residents was found to violate the equal protection clause of the Fourteenth Amendment, reported the AP.
In his ruling U.S. District Judge K. Michael Moore wrote that children born in the U.S. are citizens regardless of their parents’ immigration status. According to Inside Higher Ed, Judge Moore also wrote that requiring students to provide information about their parents’ immigration status violates their rights.
Fox News Latino reported that Judge Moore found “the relationship between the residence of the Florida students bringing the suit, the immigration status of their parents, and the interest of the state in providing quality post-secondary education “too weak” to justify the state regulations.” Judge Moore also wrote that the benefits of higher education, admission and in-state tuition rates, do not attach to the household but to the student and that it will be the students, not their parents, who have their names on the diplomas.
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