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Home, again: American students journey back from childhoods lived in Mexico

Sophomore Mariana Bobadilla works on her studies at Ontario High School. A U.S. citizen, she moved with her family to Mexico at age 4 but returned to the U.S. last August to finish high school. (The Enterprise/Yadira Lopez)

Andrea Perez was born in Ontario. She was 7 and had just entered second grade at Cairo Elementary School when her parents moved the family to Mexico.

She returned to the U.S. unaccompanied at 16 to finish her education in the first place she called home. Now 19, Perez dreams of earning her doctorate and becoming a medical researcher.

Educators believe there are many more students like her.

“We think it’s a national trend,” said Anabel Ortiz-Chavolla, director of the Migrant Education Program at Ontario High School. “These students are American . . .