New changes to the formula that determines how much financial aid money colleges get from the state will redirect money to low-income students.
The State Council of Higher Education for Virginia allocates aid money from the state to each public college and university, which is then responsible for awarding it to students.
The council has used the same allocation formula for aid since 2005, which has caused state financial aid to shift from low-income recipients to those who attend high-cost schools and usually have higher family incomes. In 2018, SCHEV estimated, $12 million, or more than 7% of financial aid money the state allocated to four-year schools, was awarded to students who meet the definition of high income — families of four making more than $98,400 a year.
The new model, approved by the state council in October, will start to reverse that trend.