Valerie A. Woodruff
For Immediate Release
--464 students receive a minimum of $1000 each for higher education pursuits--
(Dover, De.) Delaware’s Department of Education (DOE) and the Delaware Higher Education Commission (DHEC) have announced the awarding of 565 scholarships for $1,000 each to 464 students statewide who have attained high scores in reading, mathematics and writing on the March 2006 Delaware Student Testing Program (DSTP) in grades eight and ten.
The scholarship program, named in memory of Michael C. Ferguson, former Deputy Superintendent and Acting Superintendent of the Department of Public Instruction and former state Budget Director, was included in the Educational Accountability Act of 1998 and is funded by Delaware’s General Assembly. The program authorizes a maximum of 600 scholarships annually ($1,000 each) to be awarded to eighth and tenth graders who attained the highest raw scores on the DSTP in the content areas of reading, writing and mathematics.
“Since the first Ferguson scholarships were awarded seven years ago, 2,864 public and charter school students have been awarded $3,876,000 in scholarships,” said Valerie A. Woodruff, Secretary of Education. “These scholarships have obviously helped so many students including those who might not otherwise have an opportunity to attend college.” Added Secretary Woodruff, “Congratulations to this year’s Ferguson recipients. I wish each of you continued academic success.”
In the eighth grade, six students earned three scholarships; 32 students earned two scholarships; and 232 earned one scholarship. In the tenth grade, six students earned three scholarships; 45 earned two scholarships; and 244 earned one scholarship.
The law states that up to 300 of the Ferguson scholarships will be awarded to students who participate in the free and reduced lunch (FRL) program. Of the maximum 300 scholarships awarded in both the FRL program and the 300 not in FRL, up to 150 scholarships will be awarded to eighth graders and 150 awarded to tenth graders. Furthermore, the law specifies that the number of awards in each content area shall be as close to fifty as possible, and that any unassigned awards shall be allocated in the priority of reading, mathematics and writing.
Students can use their scholarship once they begin their postsecondary education; however, they must enroll in an institution within five calendar years of high school graduation or the scholarship will be forfeited. The award can only be used at regionally or nationally accredited postsecondary institutions or at Delaware or other state-approved private business and trade schools in the United States. The award cannot exceed direct educational costs.
DHEC will contact each recipient with instructions for setting up an online account where they can keep track of their scholarship funds, update contact information as needed and identify what college they plan to attend. Recipients can use the same account to access other DHEC-administered financial aid programs online.
A complete list of this year’s Michael C. Ferguson Achievement Award recipients can be found on the Higher Education Commission’s website at www.doe.k12.de.us/high-ed.
Delaware’s Department of Education is committed to promoting the highest quality education for every Delaware student by providing visionary leadership and superior service.
Delaware Department of Education
401 Federal Street, Suite #2
Dover, Delaware 19901
Phone: (302) 735-4035
Fax: (302) 739-4654
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