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White House to Give Funds to Low Income High School Students to Take College Courses

President Obama meets with students at the White House

It's not unusual for high school students to start taking college courses while they are still in high school. It gives them a jump start on college. The problem that it poses for low-income high school students, however, is finding the money to pay for it. Federal Pell Grants are awarded to students who are already attending college, but now the U.S. Department of Education has started a pilot program that offers this benefit to low-income high school students, too.

Pell Grants extended to high school students

Across the nation, 44 postsecondary institutions were selected by the U.S. Department of Education to participate as experimental sites in an experiment that will allow low-income high school students taking college credit courses to be able to receive financial assistance through a Federal Pell Grant. It is the first time the government has extended this grant to high school students.

One school who was chosen was Leeward Community College at the University of Hawaii. Since the college was selected to offer Pell Grants to high school students, it has seen an enrollment increase of 1000 percent. Leeward’s Early College program offers the college courses on the high school campuses.

Increases college enrollment

According to the U.S. Department of Education, high schools who offer early college enrollment programs have been shown to significantly increase the chances of high school completion, college enrollment, and degree attainment for students from low-income backgrounds. The Department will invest up to $20 million in 2016-17 alone, which will benefit up to 10,000 students from low-income families across the country.

For more details about Pell Grants, visit www2.ed.gov/programs/fpg

Funding and Grants For Women and Families: