The Road Map Project, which is aimed at driving major improvements in education results in South Seattle and South King County, is releasing individual school district data collected by the Higher Education Coordinating Board on the Road Map goal to get 100 percent of all eligible 8th graders in the project region signed up for the College Bound Scholarship by June 30 of this year.
For the second year in a row, the Road Map region’s school districts are working collaboratively to increase the number of eligible students signed up for the scholarship which covers the cost of tuition (at public institution rates) at eligible Washington’s public colleges and universities. In order to be eligible for the scholarship, low-income 8th grade students must apply by June 30 and sign a pledge to: graduate high school with a 2.0 GPA or higher, demonstrate good citizenship, and seek admission to a Washington state college or university. Income verification also occurs in their senior year before the scholarship is awarded.
Last year, a broad coalition collectively helped sign up 93 percent of the eligible students. The Mayors in the Road Map region played a vital role in getting the word out about the sign-up drive. Housing Authorities and after-school programs also helped. School district staff in each of the seven school districts made signing up students a priority.
“The College Bound Scholarship Program is a sound investment in our state’s future as well as the future of our state’s most vulnerable students,” said Dr. Deborah Wilds, President and COO of the College Success Foundation, which provides program outreach. “We need to encourage parents and guardians of seventh and eighth graders to look into this program – and sign up for this scholarship before the June 30th deadline.”
“So far the sign-up drive is off to a better start than last year. There are already 65 percent of the over 4,800 eligible students signed up for the scholarship. That means, in real terms, more students in need are being helped,” reported Mary Jean Ryan, Executive Director of the Community Center for Education Results, which coordinates the Road Map Project. “But, we still have progress to make. We’re doing an all-out push to get the remaining 35 percent of students signed-up to take advantage of this amazing opportunity.”
The level of commitment and cooperation from school districts, teachers, community partners and elected officials has been tremendous. “The College Bound Scholarship has been a great initiative for our district. Kent School District is committed to all students graduating and going on to a post- secondary option. Superintendent Vargas has wholeheartedly supported our schools efforts and systems to signup students. We thank our school champions and community partners for both signing up and supporting students. This year we look forward to our first graduating class of College Bound Scholarship students,” Randy Nunez, Kent School District, College and Career Family/Community Liaison.
The Road Map region includes the following school districts: Auburn, Federal Way, Highline, Kent, Renton, South Seattle and Tukwila.
The College Bound Scholarship Program is administered by the Higher Education Coordinating Board, and students and families may apply at www.collegebound.wa.gov.