Pilot Program Expands Pell Grants to Dual Enrollment Students

On Friday, the U.S. Department of Education launched an experiment that would expand Pell Grant eligibility to high school students enrolled in dual enrollment programs. The pilot program aims to expand access to college coursework for high school students from low-income backgrounds.

"A postsecondary education is one of the most important investments students can make in their future. Yet the cost of this investment is higher than ever, creating a barrier to access for some students, particularly those from low-income families," said Secretary of Education Arne Duncan in a written statement. "We look forward to partnering with institutions to help students prepare to succeed in college."

The department said it would publish a notice in the Federal Register next week inviting postsecondary institutions, in partnership with public secondary schools or local education agencies, to apply to participate in the dual enrollment experiment. Under the pilot program, the agency will spend up to $20 million on aid for dually-enrolled students in the 2016-17 academic year, providing awards to as many as 10,000 low-income students, according to a news release.

The announcement comes two weeks after the agency unveiled another pilot project that would allow federal grants and loans to flow to educational technology companies that team up with institutions and third-party "quality-assurance entities" to offer coding boot camps, MOOCs, short-term certificates, and other credentials.


Related Links

U.S. Department of Education Press Release


U.S. Department of Education Blog Post