On Thursday, March 17th, 2016, the Kentucky House of Representatives passed House Bill 626. Passing with a vote of 86-11, the bill will allow all students who graduate from High School, home school, or acquire their GED in Kentucky will be able to attend community college for free.
The ‘Work Ready’ bill allows high school graduates who want to attend community college, be able to enroll in a 2 year college in Kentucky for free. According to Joseph Gerth from the Courier Journal, students will apply for financial aid and whatever is not covered by FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid), will be paid by the state for up to two years.
In order for a student to participate in this program, they must meet several requirements including taking 12 credits per year and maintaining a 2.0 GPA. Many people involved in the program believe that the GPA requirement should be maintained at a 2.5, the same stipulation for the KEES program.
Rumors about the Work Ready bill not being enforced until 2017 makes some of Bullitt East’s seniors upset. Whitney Embry (12) said, “If the bill was being put into place during fall of 2016, I would definitely want to participate in it, but it’s a great opportunity for the juniors of Bullitt East,” Because of the UPS School to Work program, she along with many other seniors are still taking advantage of the opportunity to work for free tuition. Whitney stated, “Working at UPS for tuition is a good way to put students in a position where they have to learn how to be responsible. The date of enforcement doesn’t really bother me because I like to work for my money. I believe I would participate in the Work Ready program as well as the School to Work program offered by UPS.”