Tennessee Senate task force toughens lottery-funded scholarship standards
NASHVILLE, Tennessee: The Tennessee Senate's Lottery Stabilization Task Force recently approved recommendations that would cut the lottery-funded college scholarships of many high school graduates by 50%.
To currently obtain the full $4,000 award from a lottery HOPE scholarship, a student must achieve either a 3.0 GPA or a 21 on their ACT. The approved recommendation will change it so that only those students that meet both of those goals will receive the full award. Those that only meet one of the two requirements will have their award cut in half to $2,000.
The recommendation must now go to Lieutenant Governor Ron Ramsey and to the House Education Committee for approval. After some concern was expressed, the task force voted to recommend that changes not take effect until 2015. This will give students and parents an advance notice, so that they are not surprised by the changes.
The goal of these changes is to help reduce a $20 million gap between lottery revenues and scholarship awards. The recommendation also includes a clause to include an additional $10 million for needs-based scholarships.