Friday letters: Scholarships will help students with disabilities

August 16, 2013 

Black Mortarboard and dollar

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— Congratulations to the General Assembly and Gov. Nikki Haley for establishing college grants for students with intellectual disabilities. Learning is for everybody, and all should have access to public funding sources to make post-secondary education possible. South Carolina is already recognized nationally as a leader in post-secondary programs for students with an intellectual disability at five major universities. Now, we are one of the first in the country to have tuition assistance for courageous young adults to make the dream of independence and meaningful employment a reality.

These new college grants provide up to $7,000 annually for in-state students and can be used along with Pell grants and other private funding sources to offset the cost of these programs. To determine eligibility, families should contact the universities now so they don’t miss out on these new grants already available. The next important step for our state is to continue the path of including students who have alternative learning abilities in K-12 general education classes so these college-bound students are better prepared to take advantage of post-secondary education.

Donald Bailey

Charleston

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