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The Post-DACA Generation is Here (Updated May 2023)

Nearly All of This Year’s 120,000 Undocumented High School Graduates Are Currently Ineligible for DACA

A new report finds that an estimated 120,000 undocumented students will graduate from high school in 2023, with most of them not eligible for DACA. The new FWD.us report, published in May 2023, The Post-DACA Generation is Here, explains how DACA’s unavailability impacts undocumented youth in the U.S. The report estimates that atleast 100,000 undocumented students will graduate from high school each year for the next three years and only about one-fifth would be eligible for immigration protections through DACA, if new applications were being processed. The undocumented students in the high school class of 2023 will be among the first cohorts the majority are ineligible for DACA because they entered the U.S. after June 15, 2007. The inability to obtain DACA means students are not able to legally work in the U.S., further limiting their educational and career opportunities. According to FWD.us, more than 600,000 K-12 undocumented students are currently enrolled in U.S. schools. You can find the report here.


Source: FWD.us analysis of augmented American Community Survey 2021 data. State estimates based on the distribution of undocumented children in school age 16 in 2021. See report methodology on how national estimates of 2023 undocumented high school graduates were calculated.

Note: Due to different methodologies, the state-level numbers in this report differ from state-level data published in 2019 regarding the number of undocumented students graduating high school each year. This difference is explained by this report’s specific focus on the distribution of undocumented children in school aged 16 in 2021, compared to the other data’s focus on a large age-band to determine undocumented high school graduates. The data may also reflect the potential shift of undocumented individuals from more traditional states to less traditional destinations.  

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