BREMERTON — Three Bremerton School District schools received recognition from Gov. Jay Inslee for achieving a high sign-up rate for the College Bound Scholarship (CBS) program.
Bremerton Homelink Program, Mountain View Middle School and West Hills S.T.E.M. Academy all have a greater-than-state-average sign up rate for their students to this program.
CBS “encourages Washington students to pursue educational opportunities beyond high school. For many students, signing up for CBC is the first step in their pathway towards a college education and career readiness,” says a press release issued by Inslee.
Patty Glaser, communications coordinator for BSD, said the district has been participating in the statewide program since the 2007-2008 school year; BSD is “one of the early adopters” of the program. She said the program is for current seventh- and eighth-grade students who qualify for free or reduced lunches.
“It is important for students to be offered this opportunity because it will pay for all or a large portion of their college tuition for all four years, only in the state of Washington,” Glaser said.
According to Glaser, about 95 percent of qualifying students are signed up for this program.
“We do this during parent-teacher conferences and give individual attention to each family to encourage them to signup and explain the benefits their child will receive,” Glaser said.
In the press release, Inslee wrote, “Your district’s success places you as one of the top-performing districts in the state. Additionally, by achieving a sign-up rate greater than the state average, these schools in your district have set an example for others to model.”
According to the Washington Student Achievement Council website, www.wsac.wa.gov/college-bound, “The College Bound Scholarship was established by the Legislature in 2007. The purpose of the program is to provide state-funded financial aid to low-income students who may not consider college a possibility because of the cost.
“Eligibility for the scholarship is a two part process: First, students whose families are income-eligible must submit a complete application during grade seven or eight, and no later than June 30 of their eighth grade year; second, students must complete the scholarship pledge requirements and meet income-eligibility guidelines as determined by colleges using data from the student’s FAFSA or WASFA in their senior year of high school.”
The scholarship covers tuition at comparable public colleges, some fees and a small allowance for textbooks. Foster youth in grades seven through 12, up to age 21, who are not high school graduates are automatically enrolled in the CBS program. Since the program began, more than 247,000 students have applied.
To learn more about the CBS program, visit www.wsac.wa.gov/college-bound.
Michelle Beahm is a reporter with the Kitsap News Group. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.