Supporters of the Maryland Dream Act recently scored two high-profile endorsements: Benjamin Todd Jealous, President and CEO of the NAACP, and Dr. Joshua Starr, superintendent of Montgomery County Public Schools.
Starr, who heads the largest school system in the state, said the ballot referendum that would allow undocumented immigrants to pay in-state tuition should they meet certain prerequisites "is not about politics."
His written statement:
"The Maryland DREAM Act is not about politics: it’s about our future and the future of our students. The Act would simply allow hard-working students who have been in our system for years to pursue the dream of post-secondary education and receive in-state tuition rates. A college education is often the key to unlocking opportunity and all students—regardless of where they were born or their parents were born—deserve the chance to have a bright future and be a productive member of society. I fully support the Maryland DREAM Act.”
The bill was signed into law in May 2011 before opponents quickly gathered enough signatures to send it to referendum. The Dream Act stipulates that students must meet the following requirements before being eligible for in-state tuition, Patch previously reported.
- Graduated from a state high school after attending at least three years
- Prove that they or their parents pay state taxes
- Apply for permanent U.S. residency and for the U.S. Selective Service
The Dream Act will appear on Maryland election ballots as Question 4.
Read more: Election Guide: Montgomery County and Maryland 2012