SPS a state leader in College Bound Scholarship sign-ups

SPS a state leader in College Bound Scholarship sign-ups
Posted on 03/05/2015
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In a letter from Governor Jay Inslee, Seattle Public Schools was given a 2014 Gold Star Award for ”exemplary” performance in getting students signed up for the College Bound Scholarship Program. Seattle Public Schools signed up 100 percent of eligible eighth-graders.

The program is a state effort that commits scholarship money for college to low-income middle school students who graduate from high school and apply for college aid. Statewide, 89 percent of eligible eighth-graders signed up for the College Bound program.

College Bound is a need-based scholarship that students sign up for in middle school. As part of the sign-up, students make a pledge to graduate from a Washington high school or home school with a 2.0 GPA or higher, be a good citizen and not be convicted of a felony, apply to an eligible college and file the Free Application for Federal Students Aid (FAFSA) in a timely manner.

“Schools work really hard to make sure all of their students have access to these scholarships and get signed up,” said Krista Rillo, a College Bound Scholarship Counselor with Seattle Public Schools.<

That includes sending letters to families with application forms a couple of times a year and making phone calls near the deadline to sign up. The district supports the schools with things like the Annual College Bound Scholarship Conference, sign-up tables at events and promotion ceremonies, presentations, forms in middle school families’ first-day packets and more.

College Bound participants graduate at a rate 10 points higher than other low-income students, according to the Washington Student Achievement Council, a cabinet-level state agency that oversees the state’s College Bound program. In the years since the Legislature established the scholarship program, more than 212,000 students have applied.

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