Page 1

HOPE Scholarship White Paper Proposed
by
 the
Student
Government
Association
of
Georgia
Institute
of
Technology,


Georgia
Tech
College
Republicans,
&
the
College
Democrats
at
Georgia
Tech
 February
1,
2011


Background:
 The
HOPE
Scholarship
was
created
in
1993
to
reward
exceptional
high
school
students
with
free
tuition
 at
Georgia
colleges
and
universities.
Since
its
inception,
over
1.4
million
high
school
students
have
been
 beneficiaries
of
this
lottery‐funded
scholarship.
Additionally,
fifteen
states
replicated
Georgia’s
success
 with
the
HOPE
scholarship
and
instituted
their
own
lottery‐funded
scholarships
for
higher
education.
 However,
due
to
increasing
demand
by
Georgia
students
and
decreasing
revenue
from
the
lottery
 system,
the
HOPE
scholarship
faces
extinction
unless
programs
are
cut
back,
modified,
and
new
revenue
 is
generated.
This
fiscal
year,
the
HOPE
scholarship
will
be
short
by
$243
million
and
by
as
much
as
$317
 million
next
year.
Law
makers
tapped
into
the
state’s
reserve
fund
for
millions
to
keep
the
program
 afloat
last
year.

 


Proposal:
 The
students
of
Georgia
Tech
propose
the
following
modifications
to
the
existing
HOPE
scholarship,
and
 we
encourage
our
lawmakers
to
take
our
policy
recommendations
seriously.
The
HOPE
Scholarship
has
 been
the
gem
of
Georgia’s
education
system
for
many
years,
and
now
we
are
called
to
be
innovative
 and
induce
foresight
to
preserve
this
scholarship
that
offers
higher
education
to
so
many
worthy
 students.
 
 We
propose
the
following:
 1. Generate
new
revenue
to
sustain
HOPE
scholarship
 2. Exclude
remedial
courses
from
HOPE
scholarship
 3. Lower
prekindergarten
funding
 4. Ensure
that
for‐profit
institutions
are
left
out
of
the
equation
of
the
HOPE
scholarship
 5. Increase
high
school
GPA
requirement
and
couple
with
an
ACT/SAT
requirement
 
 The
HOPE
Scholarship
should
aim
to
fund
100%
of
tuition
costs
for
qualified
students.
To
meet
the
 original
intent
of
the
merit
scholarship,
students
who
deserve
HOPE
in
Georgia
should
not
have
to
go
 into
debt
in
order
to
cover
tuition
costs.
Every
dime
matters
to
some
Georgia
student
with
a
dream
for
a
 college
education.

 
 



1. New
revenue:
 Revenues
from
the
HOPE
Scholarship
are
solely
based
on
the
lottery
system,
one
of
the
most
successful
 lottery
systems
in
the
country.
However,
the
Georgia
lottery
system
is
incapable
of
keeping
up
with
 rising
costs
and
student
enrollment.
Our
lawmakers
need
to
work
with
the
Lottery
Corporation
to
 ensure
that
our
State’s
appropriations
are
in
line
with
the
national
average
or
explore
alternative
means
 of
revenue
for
the
scholarship.
 
 Lawmakers
need
to
embrace
new
forms
of
revenue,
rather
than
make
unnecessary
cuts
to
the
program.
 We
propose
a
combination
of
revenue
from
Sunday
alcohol
sales
tax
and
a
lottery‐regulated
casino
 using
video
lottery
terminals
(VLTs). 
 • Support
SB
10
and
HB
69:
Roughly
$67
million
in
sales
tax
revenue
could
be
collected
from
 Sunday
sales.
If
appropriated
to
the
HOPE
scholarship,
this
revenue
would
help
sustain
the
 program
for
years
to
come,
while
giving
counties
the
autonomy
to
choose
to
offer
Sunday
 alcohol
sales.
Georgia
is
one
of
three
states
in
the
nation
that
prohibits
Sunday
sales.
 • Lottery‐regulated
Casino
in
Underground
Atlanta:
Developers
Dan
O'Leary
and
John
Aderhold
 have
proposed
a
VLT
casino
that
could
increase
HOPE
revenue
by
40%.
Based
off
projections
by
 owner
of
Underground
Atlanta,
a
gaming‐terminal
casino
could
reap
$300
million
annually
after
 the
completion
of
a
hotel
and
entertainment
complex.
Redeveloping
Underground
Atlanta
 would
not
only
bring
jobs
and
stability
to
the
downtown
area,
but
also
keep
gambling
money
in
 the
state.
Georgians
currently
go
to
Alabama,
Mississippi,
Kentucky
and
North
Carolina
to
 gamble,
taking
their
money
to
those
states.
Horse
racing
is
another
possibility
for
new
revenue.
 Millions
of
additional
tax
dollars
would
help
reduce
state
budget
cuts.


2. Exclude
Remedial
Courses
 The
HOPE
scholarship
is
designated
for
high
performing
high
school
students
to
keep
them
in
Georgia
 colleges
and
universities.
It
is
incredibly
difficult
to
justify
that
a
student
is
qualified
to
receive
a
merit
 based
scholarship
if
he
or
she
is
not
adequately
prepared
for
college.
Therefore,
we
propose
to
exclude
 all
remedial
courses
from
the
HOPE
scholarship.
Few
private
scholarships
would
support
remedial
 courses,
and
there
is
no
reason
why
our
limited
lottery
funds
should
pay
for
students
who
are
not
 adequately
prepared
to
meet
the
challenges
of
higher
education.



3. Reduce
Pre­K
funding
 About
82,000
preschoolers
are
currently
enrolled
in
the
state’s
free
pre‐kindergarten
program
funded
 by
the
state
lottery.
There
is
no
doubt
that
preparing
children
for
early
success
paves
the
way
for
a
 successful
K‐12
experience.
However,
if
college
students
must
make
concessions,
the
Pre‐K
program
and
 the
Technical
System
in
our
great
state
must
make
equitable
concessions.
Programs
such
as
Federally‐ funded
Head
Start
and
private
Pre‐K
programs
run
by
local
churches
can
fill
the
gaps
left
by
reduced
 funding
for
the
Pre‐K
program.
Parents,
committed
to
send
their
children
to
their
church’s
Pre‐K
 program
will
still
send
their
children
to
the
program,
even
if
they
have
to
pay
a
premium.
Georgians
who
 are
from
at‐risk
backgrounds
may
take
advantage
of
Federal
programs.
The
Georgia
lottery
serves
many
 constituencies
and
it
is
our
belief
that
ALL
constituencies
should
make
equitable
concessions.




4. Limit
funding
for­profit
institutions
 Students
at
for
profit
institutions
should
not
receive
unlimited
HOPE
funding.
While
we
fundamentally
 believe
that
limiting
a
student’s
choice
is
wrong,
opening
the
floodgates
of
HOPE
funding
to
for
profit
 institutions
is
wrong.
If
the
goal
of
the
HOPE
scholarship
is
to
keep
qualified
Georgia
students
in
the
 state,
then
making
funds
available
to
schools
whose
origins
are
out
of
the
state
is
flawed
policy.
It
would
 be
very
difficult
to
prove
that
a
student
maintains
residence
in
the
state
of
Georgia
when
a
school
does
 not
maintain
a
significant
presence
in
the
state.
Additionally,
a
college
should
have
origins
in
the
State
of
 Georgia
in
order
to
receive
funding
from
the
HOPE
scholarship.



5. Increase
High
School
GPA
&
pair
with
ACT/SAT
score
 The
HOPE
scholarship
is
to
reward
exceptional
high
school
students
and
keep
the
best
Georgia
minds
in
 the
state.
A
3.0
high
school
GPA
alone
does
not
indicate
significant
merit.
This
is
further
illustrated
by
 the
disparate
manner
in
which
high
schools
award
grade
point
averages
to
AP,
and
Accelerated
courses.
 We
propose
high
school
GPA
tier
system
as
follows:
 • • •

3.75
GPA
+
1200
SAT=
100%
tuition
 3.5
GPA
+
1100
SAT=
85%
tuition
 3.25
+
1000
SAT=
80%
tuition


Any
student
who
maintains
a
3.0
college
GPA
for
two
semesters
is
eligible
for
100%
tuition
funding.
This
 will
eliminate
some
costs
for
first
year
funding
since
all
students
entering
college
will
not
receive
100%
 tuition.
Grade
inflation
should
not
be
a
concern
if
GPA
is
paired
with
a
national
standardized
testing
 score
such
as
the
SAT
or
ACT.
Additionally,
a
higher
GPA
requirement
will
incentivize
students
to
work
 harder
to
receive
the
HOPE
scholarship.
Not
every
student
can
be
a
recipient
of
this
scholarship,
and
 with
increasing
competition
and
enrollment
rates,
a
higher
standard
of
achievement
is
appropriate
to
 receive
the
scholarship.

 


Conclusion
 Making
the
right
decision
will
not
be
easy,
but
we
know
that,
as
our
elected
officials,
you
can
and
will
 legislate
what
is
best
for
our
state.

We
believe
that
the
changes
discussed
in
this
proposal‐
generating
 new
revenue,
excluding
remedial
courses,
lowering
prekindergarten
funding,
limiting
funding
to
for‐ profit
institutions
and
increasing
high
school
requirements‐
are
what
will
most
effectively
preserve
the
 mission
of
the
HOPE
scholarship.
 However,
should
changes
to
the
college‐level
HOPE
requirements
be
considered,
an
across
the
board
 increase
in
GPA
is
not
a
practical
option.


Such
a
change
would
incentivize
students
to
study
less
 rigorous
programs
in
order
to
ensure
that
they
can
continue
to
afford
college.

Now
more
than
ever,
it
is
 imperative
that
Georgia
students
are
encouraged
and
supported
in
the
study
of
rigorous
fields
like
the
 sciences,
engineering,
and
mathematics.
 We
also
would
like
to
encourage
our
lawmakers
to
recognize
that
decreasing
appropriations
to
higher
 education
will
only
perpetuate
the
issue
at
hand.
We
thank
the
Georgia
General
Assembly
for
their



commitment
to
higher
education
and
ask
that
the
Legislature
continue
to
honor
its
commitment
to
 supporting
the
University
System
of
Georgia
and
higher
education.



HOPE Scholarship White Paper  

Georgia Tech Students' Official position on HOPE

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