Is Education a Human Right?
(Why College should be accessible to everyone)
If you ask most people walking down the street if everyone has the right to an education, they will likely answer “Yes.” All of us as human beings have the drive and desire to learn and grow, either through personal experiences or through a formal education process. When you break down just who the “everyone” is that deserves an education, however, you will find out that poor and working immigrants (documented and undocumented) are often left out of the conversation. Immigrant youth do have access to public education, but only until the 12th grade, if they even make it that far. Unfortunately, a large number of our youth do not even graduate from high school. (In Philadelphia, the overall high school dropout percentage is 44%; Latino males make up 57% of that number.) In fact, youth in our community are not all getting access to college, let alone the necessary information to attain a higher education. The issue of immigration status makes college access much more difficult. In addition, college is expensive. If you are a young person who does manage to graduate from high school, one of the major hurdles you will face is whether or not you can afford to go to college. When you add this to that the fact that financial aid is not an option for undocumented youth, college almost seems out of reach.
Here at Juntos we believe that education, at all levels, is a human right and should be equally accessed by everyone, regardless of status.
Below you will find FAQs, & resources, and guides to help the youth in our community keep on the road to higher education.