What does “currently in school” mean for a DACA applicant?
To be considered “currently in school” under the DACA guidelines, you must be enrolled in school on the date you submit your DACA application. More specifically, you must be enrolled in:
- A public or private elementary school, junior high or middle school, high school or secondary school; or
- An education program assisting students either in obtaining a regular high school diploma or in passing a GED equivalent exam; or
- An education, literacy or career/vocational training program that is designed to lead to placement in postsecondary education, job training, or employment. (Postsecondary refers to education after high school, such as trade school or college).
In certain circumstances, enrollment in an English as a Second Language (ESL) program may qualify as “currently in school”. To qualify, the program must be a requirement for placement in postsecondary education, job training or employment. You must submit documentary evidence that your participation in the ESL program is directly connected to your placement in postsecondary education, job training or employment.
If you are enrolled in an education, literacy or career training program, including an ESL program, you must show that you are actually working toward future placement in college, job training or employment.
DHS prefers that you attend a program funded by Federal or State grants. Programs funded by other sources mayqualify if they are administered by providers of “demonstrated effectiveness”, such as community colleges and some community-based organizations. In assessing the effectiveness of a program, DHS will consider the following factors:
- How long the program has been in existence;
- Its track record in assisting students in obtaining a high school diploma, passing the GED exam, or placing students in postsecondary education, job training or employment; and
- Other indicators of the program’s overall quality.
Please note that proving the effectiveness of a program not funded by Federal or State grants is entirely your responsibility.