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Fair is fair!

Aide Arana

As for the people that shop with WIC, this is provided for their U.S. citizen babies. I am very happy to see that there are people out there who care about CHILDREN. This in-state tuition brings with it the one and only chance these CHILDREN might have at becoming legal, productive, and law-abiding U.S. citizen some day (regardless where they come from).

Not that Spanish-speaking children are more deserving. It is simply that they are the largest minority population in our area. This law will benefit any child falling under these same characteristics as the Spanish-speaking immigrants.

Let’s also remember they are not getting a free ride! Even at in-state tuition rates, college can be very expensive. They do not qualify for any types of grants, scholarships or student loans.

As for Mexico, when I became a U.S. citizen, I gave up the rights that come with being a native of Mexico. I return every year, and every year I take my (U.S. born) children to school (even though it is for a short time). They are accepted, no questions asked.

As for the system abusers, yes I agree! They too exist amongst my people, and they too make life just a bit more difficult for my children to be fully accepted in American schools. However, I have learned to focus on the fact that it is the children we are trying to help. We know that our children hold the future and they are the ones that can mark change for the better.

To answer the question regarding the free and reduced lunch, please read the following paragraph taken from the U.S. Department of Agriculture Web page, http://www.fns.usda.gov/cnd/Lunch/: “How does the National School Lunch Program work? Generally, public or nonprofit private schools of high school grade or under and public or nonprofit private residential child care institutions may participate in the school lunch program. School districts and independent schools that choose to take part in the lunch program get cash subsidies and donated commodities from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) for each meal they serve. In return, they must serve lunches that meet federal requirements, and they must offer free or reduced-price lunches to eligible children. School food authorities can also be reimbursed for snacks served to children through age 18 in after-school educational or enrichment.”

I do not need to remind anyone that it is and has been primarily Spanish speaking immigrants (and their children) who do (and have done throughout history) the work out in America’s fields.

I feel honored to have been an aide in the classroom and I hope to be a teacher soon. I hold the highest respect for the teachers who have done everything in their power to teach all children regardless of how much money their school has.

You are correct in stating that “the law needs revision.” Here is a chance for you to make a difference in a minimal part of that law. Support “in-state tuition.” Keep that money (however little it may be) within our state. Give all kids the possibility of making their dreams come true – gifted, talented or not.

As for the school board and school district, they also (I’m sure) do everything in their power to ensure a quality education for our kids. The reality is, however, it is up to concerned parents such as you and me to make sure it does not stop and also to ensure that it only gets better.

And lastly, I would like to clear up the fact regarding in-state tuition for your children. It is up to your children to request in-state tuition after one year, while you as a parent remain a resident of another state. Each college has its own set of requirements and documentation needed to undergo this process.

Once again, this in-state tuition proposal is not giving these children a free ride. It is making parents take responsibility. Without a future to look forward to, these kids end up getting married at 15 (to stop being a burden on the family)and end up pregnant and on WIC (food stamps if legal) and therefore become a burden on you and me.

We want these kids to become useful and profitable members of our communities. This is one simple and minimal way to help some of them accomplish just that. How can this not be better? There will still be those who cannot afford it (even at the lower rates). And Marty Lich, you are not a bigot!


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