School Choice & Charters

Ga. Scholarship Keeps Students In State

By John Gehring — January 31, 2001 3 min read
  • Save to favorites
  • Print

Georgia’s hope Scholarship program, which provides up to $3,000 a year in college aid to high school students who graduate with a B average, has enticed top-notch students to choose to attend in-state colleges and universities in greater numbers than ever before, a study concludes.

The study, conducted by two economists and a graduate researcher at the University of Georgia, found that the 7-year-old program’s broadest impact has been on influencing where students choose to go to college—rather than on widening access to postsecondary education.

“If your goal is to induce more people to go to college, this is probably not the scholarship plan to adopt,” said Christopher Cornwell, an associate professor of economics and the study’s co-author. “It is not clear the scholarship caused people to go to college who wouldn’t have otherwise.”

For More Information

Read the report, “The Enrollment Effects of Merit-Based Financial Aid: Evidence from Georgia’s HOPE Scholarship,” (requires Adobe’s Acrobat Reader), from the Terry College of Business.

Seventy-six percent of Georgia high school students with combined SAT scores greater than 1500, out of a possible 1600, now attend college in state, compared with just 23 percent in 1992, the researchers conclude in “The Enrollment Effects of Merit-Based Financial Aid: Evidence From Georgia’s HOPE Scholarship.”

Georgia’s lottery-funded program, which has been copied in at least a dozen other states and served as the basis for President Clinton’s federal HOPE tuition tax credit, has distributed a total of more than $1 billion to more than 500,000 students since its inception in 1993.

Mr. Cornwell and David B. Mustard, an assistant professor of economics at the university’s college of business, found that the Helping Outstanding Pupils Educationally Scholarship has prompted an 11 percent increase in first-time freshman enrollment, mostly at four-year colleges and universities.

The two authors, along with researcher Deepa Sridhar, conclude the scholarship program has had a significant impact on African-American enrollment at Georgia’s four-year schools. From 1993 to 1998, 24 percent more African-American students enrolled at a state college or university, their research shows.

Even at more expensive private, four-year colleges, black enrollment from Georgia high schools increased by 12 percent, the study found. There was a 20 percent gain for all Georgia high school students at private, four-year colleges.

The scholarships reward students, regardless of income, who maintain at least a B average in high school with full tuition, mandatory student fees, and a book allowance at the state’s public colleges and universities. Students who attend private colleges receive $3,000 toward their tuition.

The study draws upon statistics from the Southern Regional Education Board, an Atlanta-based organization that works to improve school achievement in Southern states, and contrasts enrollment rates in Georgia with those in bordering states that enrolled the most Georgia high school graduates.

After the HOPE program began, the study shows, 18 percent fewer Georgia students enrolled in those colleges and universities. Overall, at schools throughout the 16-state SREB region, Georgia students’ out-of-state enrollment fell 7.5 percent in the same period.

About two-thirds of students lose their HOPE scholarships while in college because they fail to maintain a B average. But the researchers, whose work was financed by the National Science Foundation, say most of those retention problems occur at two-year community and technical colleges.

Related Tags:

A version of this article appeared in the January 31, 2001 edition of Education Week as Ga. Scholarship Keeps Students In State


Commenting has been disabled on edweek.org effective Sept. 8. Please visit our FAQ section for more details. To get in touch with us visit our contact page, follow us on social media, or submit a Letter to the Editor.


Events

This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Teaching Webinar
What’s Next for Teaching and Learning? Key Trends for the New School Year
The past 18 months changed the face of education forever, leaving teachers, students, and families to adapt to unprecedented challenges in teaching and learning. As we enter the third school year affected by the pandemic—and
Content provided by Instructure
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Curriculum Webinar
How Data and Digital Curriculum Can Drive Personalized Instruction
As we return from an abnormal year, it’s an educator’s top priority to make sure the lessons learned under adversity positively impact students during the new school year. Digital curriculum has emerged from the pandemic
Content provided by Kiddom
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Equity & Diversity Webinar
Leadership for Racial Equity in Schools and Beyond
While the COVID-19 pandemic continues to reveal systemic racial disparities in educational opportunity, there are revelations to which we can and must respond. Through conscientious efforts, using an intentional focus on race, school leaders can
Content provided by Corwin

EdWeek Top School Jobs

Teacher Jobs
Search over ten thousand teaching jobs nationwide — elementary, middle, high school and more.
View Jobs
Principal Jobs
Find hundreds of jobs for principals, assistant principals, and other school leadership roles.
View Jobs
Administrator Jobs
Over a thousand district-level jobs: superintendents, directors, more.
View Jobs
Support Staff Jobs
Search thousands of jobs, from paraprofessionals to counselors and more.
View Jobs

Read Next

School Choice & Charters Virtual Charters in Hot Water Again. Accusations of Fraud Prompt $150M Lawsuit
Indiana officials seek to recoup more than $150 million they say was either wrongly obtained or misspent by a consortium of virtual schools.
Arika Herron, The Indianapolis Star
2 min read
Indiana's attorney general Todd Rokita speaks at a news conference on Sept. 16, 2020, in Indianapolis. Rokita filed a lawsuit against a group of online charter schools accused of defrauding the state out of millions of dollars Thursday, July 8, 2021.
Indiana's attorney general Todd Rokita speaks at a news conference on Sept. 16, 2020, in Indianapolis.
Darron Cummings/AP
School Choice & Charters How the Pandemic Helped Fuel the Private School Choice Movement
State lawmakers got a new talking point as they pushed to create and expand programs to send students to private schools.
8 min read
Collage showing two boys in classroom during pandemic wearing masks with cropped photo of feet and arrows going in different directions.
Collage by Gina Tomko/EducationWeek (Images: Getty)
School Choice & Charters Opinion Taking Stock After 30 Years of Charter Schools
Rick Hess speaks with Nina Rees, president and CEO of the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools, on charter schools turning 30.
8 min read
Image shows a multi-tailed arrow hitting the bullseye of a target.
DigitalVision Vectors/Getty
School Choice & Charters In Fight Over Millions of Dollars for Charter Schools, a Marijuana Tax May Bring Peace
The Oklahoma State Board of Education voted unanimously to rescind a polarizing lawsuit settlement, pending certain stipulations.
Nuria Martinez-Keel, The Oklahoman
3 min read
Money bills cash funds close up Getty
Getty