Funding K-12 Schools & Paying for College

Cooke Scholars work together at our 2018 Scholars Weekend event.

October 26, 2018 – Here’s our weekly roundup of education news you may have missed. Coverage examines college tuition and financial aid practices targeting students with financial need. In K-12 news, building maintenance and course offerings present funding challenges to school districts.

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High-achieving high school seniors can now apply for the Cooke College Scholarship Program and the Cooke Undergraduate Transfer Scholarship is accepting applications from community college students preparing to transfer to a four-year institution. Both programs provide up to $40,000 per year, as well as ongoing advising and access to the thriving Cooke Scholar community.


Elementary & Secondary Education:

  • A new report by the Government Accountability Office determines: “Students in relatively poor and small schools had less access to high school courses that help prepare them for college.”
  • The condition of a school building is correlated with its students’ academic achievement and chronic absenteeism rates, but funding maintenance can be a challenge for many school districts. Chalkbeat looks at a plan from Shelby County Schools in Tennessee, which would consolidate schools in order to manage costs.


Higher Education:

  • The Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis explains findings from its recent study on financial aid equity and efficiency: “Providing assistance to those who need it most will boost the national economy, not drain it. And need-based aid for college helps achieve the separate social goal of greater equity.”
  • The Education Writers Association shares information found using its Tuition Tracker web tool: “The colleges that charge the lowest net prices to low-income Americans also have the lowest graduation rates. Meanwhile, colleges that tend to give their alumni more job market advantages are becoming increasingly unaffordable for students from low-income families.”
  • “Selective flagship universities appear to be getting the message” about college affordability concerns, writes The Chronicle of Higher Eduction. “More of them are rolling out financial-aid packages aimed directly at students from middle-income families.” The Cooke Foundation’s 2017 “State University No More” report discusses related findings on how enrollment trends at these institutions disadvantage students with financial need.
  • “Recent estimates indicate that approximately half of U.S. college students experience some form of food insecurity, which can hinder academic achievement and undermine an investment in higher education,” states University Business.


Cooke Foundation Highlights:

  • The Thomasville Times-Enterprise celebrates 8th grade student Bishop Jackson, who was among 50 students nationwide selected for the 2018 Cooke Young Scholars Program.
  • The deadline to submit proposals for our Good Neighbor Grants program is next week! Nonprofit organizations in the metropolitan Washington, DC area have until Thursday, November 1, 2018 to apply for up to $35,000 in funding. These grants can support the establishment of new programs or the enhancement of existing initiatives that support high potential, low-income students.


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Photo header: Cooke Scholars work together at our 2018 Scholars Weekend event.