DACA Deferred


President Donald Trump on Tuesday moved to end the program that protects young undocumented immigrants—known as “dreamers”—from being deported. Under the plan, Congress has six months to come up with a legislative fix for the program, which will now expire next March. (PBS NewsHour)

How did President Obama try to expand DACA?

Teachers, scroll down for a quick list of key resources in our Teachers Toolkit.

Discussion Ideas

  • President Donald Trump and Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced the U.S. government is rescinding DACA. What is DACA?
    • DACA stands for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals. It is an executive order issued by President Barack Obama in 2012.
      • An executive order is a legally binding set of orders from the president (the Chief Executive) to federal agencies. The federal agencies most impacted by DACA are the U.S. United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), and Customs and Border Protection (CBP).
    • DACA is part of U.S. immigration policy. It gives those who qualify the right to legally work in the U.S., and a deferral on consideration for deportation. A DACA application can be renewed every two years.
      • To qualify for DACA, applicants must:
        • have come to the U.S. before their 16th birthday.
        • have lived continuously in the U.S. since June 15, 2007.
        • have been born no earlier than June 16, 1981.
        • have been physically in the U.S. on June 15, 2012 (when DACA was enacted) and at the time of their DACA request.
        • be enrolled in school, be serving in the military, have completed high school, or have been honorably discharged from the military.
        • have not been convicted of a felony or serious misdemeanors.


  • Is DACA part of a path to American citizenship for so-called “Dreamers”?
    • No. As its name implies, DACA defers the possibility of deportation and allows for legal work in the U.S. It is not part of a citizenship or permanent residency program.



  • What have President Trump and AG Sessions changed about DACA?



  • What will happen to the 800,000 “Dreamers” protected by DACA now?
    • The Department of Homeland Security is no longer accepting new applications for the program. All pending applications will be considered on a case-by-case basis.
    • Travel outside the U.S. will be limited. Right now, Dreamers must have an approved form to legally travel outside the country for education, employment, or humanitarian purposes. USCIS is no longer approving those forms.


  • What will happen if Congress fails to pass immigration reform by March?
    • Dreamers whose two-year deferrals are up may be vulnerable to deportation. USCIS says it will not share the immigration status of Dreamers with other federal agencies (including ICE or CBP) unless the person “poses a risk to national security or public safety.”
      • In 2018, more than 275,000 Dreamers are set to have their DACA protections expire. In 2019, more than 321,000 Dreamers are set to have their DACA protections expire.



Department of Homeland Security: Frequently Asked Questions: Rescission Of Deferred Action For Childhood Arrivals (DACA)

PBS NewsHour: Trump’s decision to end DACA, explained

Washington Post: What to know about the decision to end DACA

Washington Post: The White House statement on DACA, annotated

CNN: US immigration: DACA and Dreamers explained

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