Coleman’s bill would help Colorado students receive federal aid for a postsecondary degree

(Mar. 14) – The House Education committee passed Rep. James Coleman’s bill to help increase federal financial aid application completion rates. Colorado students missed out on as much as $50 million in financial aid last year due to students failing to complete Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) forms.

“We are letting our hard earned tax payer dollars go to other states because our students are not filling out their FAFSA forms,” said Rep. Coleman, D-Denver. “This bill will help Colorado get a huge return on our investment in our students, ensure more students have the tools they need to succeed and make our higher-ed institutions stronger.”

Completing a FAFSA form increases the odds that Colorado’s high school students – particularly low income students and students of color – will attain a postsecondary degree, increasing their future earnings and success. Studies show that 90 percent of high school seniors who complete FAFSA attend college directly after high school. Boosting Colorado’s FAFSA completion rate will boost our state’s college and postsecondary institution enrollment rate.

If passed, the program would begin in 2019.

HB19-1187 was approved by the House Education committee unanimously and now goes to the House Appropriations committee.

The state board of education will distribute funding to education providers that receive a grant under the School Counselor Corps Grant Program, for the purpose of educating and supporting students and families with the completion and submission of the free application for federal student aid or applications for state student aid.

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