The Nevada System of Higher Education Board of Regents passed the Nevada Foster Care Fee Waiver unanimously during a Sept. 6 meeting.
The program will waive certain laboratory and registration fees for foster kids 14 to 25 who have graduated high school or the equivalent and are applying for college credits in Nevada. Students must complete the FAFSA to be eligible.
The program aims to help resolve systemic inequalities for children who “age out” or turn 18 while still in foster care. While studies show that most foster youths want to pursue college, only 20 percent actually attend, compared with about 60 percent of high school graduates overall. Only 2 to 9 percent of foster youths who attend college actually attain a bachelor’s degree, according to studies by the National Working Group for Foster Care and Education.
Nevada is the 29th state to establish a waiver program.
The program will begin in January and will cost an estimated $115,000 for the first group of students.