California Dream Act of 2011
The California Dream Act of 2011, authored by Assembly Member Gil Cedillo (Los Angeles), became law through the passage of two Assembly Bills. AB 130 (pdf) & AB 131 (pdf).
AB 130 allows students who meet AB 540 criteria California Education Code 68130.5(a) (pdf) to apply for and receive non-state funded scholarships for public colleges and universities.
AB 131 allows students who meet AB 540 criteria to apply for and receive state-funded financial aid such as institutional grants, community college fee waivers, Cal Grant and Chafee Grant. You can apply for financial aid through the California Dream Act application which can be found at dream.csac.ca.gov. This website will give you full information about the benefits you can now receive as a result of the California Dream Act.
AB 540 & AB 2000
The California Assembly Bill AB 540 first enacted in 2001 and subsequently updated via AB 2000 in 2014 offer asistance to certain individuals who do not meet California Residency for the purposes of education.
AB 540 Guidelines & 68130.5 Requirements for Eligibility
- Must have attended a California high school for 3 or more full academic years;
- Must have or will graduate from a California high school or have attained a G.E.D.; or received a passing mark on the California High School Proficiency Exam (CHSPE);
- Must register or is currently enrolled at an accredited institution of public higher education in California;
- Must file or will file an affidavit as required by individual institutions, stating that the filer will apply for legal residency as soon as possible;
- Must not hold a valid non-immigrant visa (F, J, H, L, A, E, etc.)
AB 540 Ineligibility
An ineligible student is one who does not meet the AB 540 criterion. In most situations, not having met the three years attendance at a California high school is what prevents a student from qualifying for AB 540. Students can still attend the university as long as they meet the admissions criteria and are accepted by the college or university, but must pay non-resident fees.
Expanding ease of access
AB 2000 provides that a student may qualify for exemption from nonresident tuition either by high school attendance in California for 3 or more years or by either elementary or secondary school attendance, or both, in California for a total of 3 or more years and attainment of credits earned in California from a California high school equivalent to 3 or more years of full-time high school coursework, in addition to the other conditions referenced as part of the AB540 bill.
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