College Bound Scholarship.
The College Bound Scholarship (CBS) program was established in 2007 to provide guaranteed four-year tuition to students from low-income families. The first CBS awards were granted to the graduating high school class of 2012. Eligible students for the CBS include those who:
A student may also be eligible if they were a dependent who was adopted between the ages of 14 and 18 with a negotiated adoption agreement that includes continued eligibility in the CBS program.
Beginning in the seventh grade, eligible students are automatically enrolled in the CBS by the Washington Student Achievement Council (WSAC). Students and parents are notified of the student's eligibility and the scholarship's requirements. To receive the CBS, a student must graduate from high school with at least a C grade point average, have no felony convictions, and have a family income that does not exceed 65 percent of the state median family income.
The CBS recipients who attend public two-year or four-year institutions of higher education receive an award to cover the cost of tuition and fees, minus any state-funded grant, scholarship, or waiver assistance. The CBS recipient also receives $500 for books and materials. The student must maintain satisfactory academic progress and may not receive the scholarship for more than four full-time years.
All higher education institutions that participate in the CBS program are required to submit certain CBS data to the Education Research and Data Center (ERDC) annually for the purpose of analyzing and evaluating the effectiveness of the CBS program. The WSAC is also required to submit student unit record data for the CBS program to the ERDC.
For CBS eligible students enrolling in a postsecondary education institution for the first time beginning with the 2022-23 academic year, a C grade point average is required only for those students seeking direct admission to a public or private four-year institution of higher education.
Additional data points on grade point averages are added to the information that higher education institutions must submit to the ERDC. The ERDC must annually send the CBS data that is submitted by the higher education institutions to the WSAC beginning with July 1, 2023. The WSAC must submit an annual legislative report on the CBS data beginning November 1, 2023.
(In support) Washington has a serious problem with students disengaging after high school. Fewer Washington students go directly to college than elsewhere, and the CBS is a modest effort to increase direct enrollment. If a student struggled academically in high school, why would the state put up a barrier to that student pursuing a trade or taking vocational courses? These barriers should be removed. In the past 10 years since students have started receiving the CBS, there have been thousands that figured out a little too late in their high school career that college is their path. There are about 5,000 to 7,000 students who graduate each year without a 2.0 grade point average, so this is not a tiny population, but by no means the majority. These students might barely miss that 2.0 grade point average and start at a community or technical college, but lose out on the CBS. Somewhere around 10 percent of those students do enroll in college despite not getting the CBS. This change in accessibility is a wonderful opportunity for CTC students. There are many who are already on college campuses and may not be accessing the early commitment of financial aid that is designed to encourage them to complete postsecondary options. This proposal encourages students to continue their education.