La. ranks sixth nationally in senior submissions

Report shows fewer Calcasieu students applying for federal aid towards college

FAFSA graphicMGN

With less than 100 days left for the Free Application for Federal Student Aid priority deadline, Louisiana is ranked sixth nationally for its number of senior submissions, according to a recent report by the National College Access Network.  

Sixty-seven percent of public schools statewide have had at least 50 percent of their outgoing seniors submit the FAFSA, a significant increase over the 23 percent of public school submissions last year.

Calcasieu parish, however, has significantly less submissions than its surrounding parishes.  

Current data from the Louisiana Department of Education shows 42 percent of public Calcasieu seniors have submitted the FAFSA while Beaureguard has 62 percent submitted, Allen and Jeff Davis have 61 percent submitted and Cameron has 53 percent submitted.

{{tncms-inline content=”<p class="p1"><span class="s1"><strong>As the FAFSA is now a graduation requirement for all students, ‘we are confident that our completion numbers will continue to rise in the coming weeks.’</strong></span></p> <p class="p2"><strong>Holly Holland</strong></p> <p class="p4">Calcasieu Parish School Board spokeswoman</p>” id=”70682bd4-e0a9-4503-b491-0a591af32c0e” style-type=”quote” title=”Pull Quote” type=”relcontent”}}

Calcasieu Parish School Board attributes these numbers to the increase in students “choosing to pursue a vocational career in lieu of attending a four-year collegiate program,” said board spokeswoman Holly Holland.  

According to the CPSB Office of Public Information, 980 CPSB juniors and seniors are actively participating in the LDOE’s Jump Start program.  

As Calcasieu is experiencing a job boom in industry related fields, Jump Start allows students the opportunity to complete the coursework necessary to earn basic industry credentials to be utilized in the local workforce immediately upon graduation. 

With more than 2,000 seniors graduating this May, however, vocational pursuits alone can not answer for the lag.  

In addition to Jump Start, CPSB and Lake Charles College Prep students have the opportunity to take dual-enrollment courses at McNeese State University and Sowela Technical Community College.  

It is important to “take a holistic approach concerning a student — whether he or she be four-year liberal arts college bound or technical college bound,” said Judge Gene Thibodeaux, president of Lake Charles Charter Foundation.  

  1. High school seniors have new requirement

Both McNeese and Sowela financial aid representatives agreed, even if a student is enrolled in higher education in high school they still need to complete the FAFSA if they plan to continue as freshmen.

As the FAFSA is now a graduation requirement for all students, “we are confident that our completion numbers will continue to rise in the coming weeks,” Holland said.  

 

 

As the FAFSA is now a graduation requirement for all students, ‘we are confident that our completion numbers will continue to rise in the coming weeks.’

Holly Holland

Calcasieu Parish School Board spokeswoman

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