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A-Plus Students Could Have to Pay for Some Credit Hours as State - KOAM TV 7

A-Plus Students Could Have to Pay for Some Credit Hours as State Shortfall Looms

Updated:
Hundreds of Crowder College students could be forced to pay for credit hours they were supposed to get free of charge.

     The Missouri Department of Education predicts a fund shortfall for the A-Plus program for the spring semester.

Students and administrators say the possible funding hit could impact their studies.

Whitney Wise is in her first year at Crowder College on the long road to becoming a speech pathologist and says her A-plus scholarship makes a big financial difference. "I plan on going to school for six years so not having to pay for the first two years is really helpful, " says Wise.

She's not alone.

Sydney Anderson says, "The A-plus program's  a really  great  opportunity to get your schooling paid for and because of A-plus all I have to pay for is my books."

Cole Bishop add, "I only got one other  scholarship and I'd only worked a part time job because I knew I was gonna have A-plus to pay  for college. It made it a lot less stressful going through high school."  

Whitney works 30 hours a week and  takes fifteen credit hours, but funding for up to four of those, about $400 dollars, could now  be in jeopardy.

Crowder College President Jennifer Methvin says,  "The information from the department at this time is that they anticipate a 2014 -15 shortfall  in A- plus scholarship funding."

Crowder's president says right now it's just a warning but she says A-plus families plan on being fully funded beginning the program as high school freshman.

Methvin says, " It's  in more school districts than previously so more and more families are counting on that as part of their package to plan for college."

Even though it's only one to four  credit hours A-plus students say it could make a difference in how they have to pick up the tab.

Whitney says,  "I wouldn't have as much time to study  because I would be working even more than I already am."

Cole says, “It adds stress because you have to have  jobs and the  studying  and the classes,  and it all just piles up."

And Methvin says that could end up delaying their education.  "Research and experience tells us over and over again a student  who can devote more of their full time attention to their studies  will complete that degree  more quickly. So for  these students,  if this  means they have to up their hours at work, it is an unfortunate thing. And  it will prolong the time it takes for them to get to their credential and that's unfortunate."

     A -plus students must maintain a two-point-five grade point average through high school and perform fifty  hours of mentoring or tutoring.

      State officials say if  credit hours are limited, the change  would not take affect before January.

     To learn more about the a plus program  click here.

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