Pell Grants Face Cuts in Congress

pell grant cut
pell grant cut

In February 2011, the U.S. House of Representatives passed an appropriations bill that would cut the Federal Pell Grant Program, beginning in July 2011. The bill is now being debated in the Senate as anxious students await the outcome for the college funding program.

The Federal Pell Grant, formerly named the Basic Educational Opportunity Grant, was first issued in 1973 to allow children of low-income families the opportunity to attend college. The money does not need to be repaid.

To receive the Pell Grant, the student must demonstrate financial need by filling out the FAFSA form which looks at family income and determines the expected contribution of the student's family and its eligibility for financial aid. Currently, families making less than $41,000 a year receive the bulk of Pell Grants. Depending on the cost of the chosen college, the Pell Grant may pay anything from a small portion to most of a student's costs.