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Rep. Richard Corcoran
member, Florida House of Representatives
Scholarships Expanded for Low-Income Students

Education has to be one of our top priorities.  If we get education right, almost everything else takes care of itself.  One grant program we helped expand was our state’s low-income scholarships.

As of today, over 38,400 low-income students in approximately 1,200 schools throughout Florida are receiving this scholarship.  This is an extremely popular program as over 13,000 students are currently on the waiting list to receive this scholarship for this school year alone.  Additionally, 61,000 student applications have already been begun for next year, at a rate of approximately 3,000 per week.  Available funds are limited, and it is estimated that at least 45,000 students will be served by this scholarship in the up-coming school year. 

These low-income scholarships serve children whose family income allows them to be eligible for free or reduced lunches in public schools.  While the federal family income standard for free or reduced lunches in public schools is 185 percent of the poverty line, on average, those eligible for this scholarship have a family income only 12 percent of the poverty line.  Furthermore, 56 percent of these students come from homes with only one parent, who is undoubtedly struggling to make ends meet. 

Students receiving these scholarships tend to be among the lowest performing students and yet, achieve results that show great learning gains by performing much better on math and English examinations. 

What we have here is a scholarship that essentially helps poor-performing, low-income students.  It makes available more money for our public schools, leads to better student performance in math and English for private and public school students, and increases public school performance.  It is a prime example of common sense legislation that benefits all students, and not just a select few.  If you would like more information regarding this scholarship, please do not hesitate to contact my office, or visit www.stepupforstudents.org. 

Richard Corcoran is a Republican state representative from New Port Richey who serves House District 45.  


by Dr. Radut.