YAKIMA, Wash -- With comprehensive immigration reform grinding to a halt in Washington, DC, some local educators are urging limited reform -- just for students.
The Dream Act is a bill before congress that would grant temporary legal residency to undocumented students already here in the U.S. These are children of illegal immigrants, who supports of the bill say, haven't committed any crime. They simply followed their parents to the U.S.
The Dream Act would grant all undocumented students temporary residency, and after completing two years of college, permanent citizenship. Students could also gain citizenship by serving in the U.S. military.
Supporters believe it will keep children in school and heading in the right path, and away from a life of crime and gangs.
"Its the ability to have hope that you can become something in your life," said Ricardo Sanchez, of the Latino Education Achievement Project. "When you implant that in the mind of a young child, at an early age, I think you will have a much better society."
The bill was first introduced in 2001 and has bi-partisan support, including Senators Cantwell and Murray.