The Middle Class Scholarship’s Embarrassment of Riches

Earlier this week, the Los Angeles Times reported that 73,000 state university students will receive Middle Class Scholarship awards in 2014-15, fewer than half of the 156,000 originally anticipated. The Middle Class Scholarship program was created last year to provide … Continue reading

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California Budget Includes Long Overdue Financial Aid Increase

The California state budget signed last week will make an important down payment towards college affordability for the state’s most financially strapped students.  The agreement includes a long-overdue increase to the Cal Grant B access award, which helps California’s lowest … Continue reading

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Playing the Cal Grant Odds

California college students who meet Cal Grant eligibility requirements are guaranteed a Cal Grant if they’re recent high school graduates who meet the application deadline. But students who apply for a grant more than one year after finishing high school … Continue reading

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Helping the Lowest Income Students Will Have the Highest Returns: What the California Legislature Can Do Right Now to Strengthen Cal Grants

This week, the California State Assembly and Senate will hold budget subcommittee hearings on higher education, including Cal Grants – the state’s need-based financial aid program. The subcommittees are expected to vote on spending plans for the 2014-15 budget year. … Continue reading

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California Budget Proposal Includes Narrow but Important Cal Grant Fix

The California Governor’s budget proposal includes much to like for higher education. Deepened investments in public colleges and universities, as well as a fund for innovation in higher education, will serve to keep tuitions steady and make it easier for … Continue reading

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U.S. Department of Education Strikes Out on CDRs

In the last three months, the U.S. Department of Education has struck out on clarifying what cohort default rates (CDRs) mean for students and colleges, prompting some colleges to stop offering federal student loans. The Department needs to provide better … Continue reading

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Low-Hanging Federal Loan Fruit

For college students who need to borrow, at any type of school, federal student loans are the safest and most affordable choice. Unfortunately, some community colleges across the country continue to deny their students access to federal loans. This leaves … Continue reading

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Cal Grants: California’s Original Middle Class Scholarship Program

Tomorrow or Saturday, the Legislature will vote on the 2013-14 Budget Act. Included in the budget at the behest of the Assembly Speaker, and agreed to by the Senate pro Tempore and the Governor, is a new Middle Class Scholarship … Continue reading

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California Governor’s 2013-14 May Budget Revision: FAFSA Proposal Still Misses the Mark

California Governor Jerry Brown today updated his proposed spending plan for 2013-14.  As in his January plan, he proposes no policy changes to the Cal Grant program, a welcome reprieve from recent years’ cuts.  We are also pleased that he … Continue reading

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California Governor’s 2013-14 Budget: Kudos and Questions

Today Governor Jerry Brown introduced his proposal for the 2013-14 state budget. His proposal outlines laudable and critical goals for higher education: making the state’s public colleges more affordable; increasing the number of Californians who complete a degree or certificate; … Continue reading

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