Carney plan would change college aid Matthew Albright, The News Journal
The legislation Carney plans to introduce in the House of Representatives would have the U.S. Department of Education create a pilot program that would make Higher Education Savings Accounts for students who qualify for free or reduced-price lunch.
Those accounts would contain the maximum award from Pell Grants, the primary federal student aid for low-income students. At the moment, that amount is $5,775 per semester, though any increase in the grant would be matched in the accounts.
Students who perform well academically could be eligible for further contributions to the account.
Carney said he wanted to leave many of the details, like how many students would participate in the pilot, up to the department.
The system would help families plan for paying for college, Carney said, in the same way Social Security gives workers regular notice on how much they’ve accrued to help prepare for retirement.
“Too much talent is being wasted because low-income students don’t think they have the wherewithal to afford higher education,” he said.
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