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FOFCAI and Central Florida Homeschool Graduation set for May 16th at Victory Church . . Learn more

 

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Bright Futures Scholarships

Notes for 2014 Seniors on Completing the Bright Futures Process

The Florida Bright Futures Scholarship Program has helped more than 405,000 Florida students attend a postsecondary institution. The program offers three levels of scholarship awards, each with its own requirements:
     Florida Academic Scholars Award (FAS)
     Florida Medallion Scholars Award (FMS)
     Florida Gold Seal Vocational Scholars Award (GSV)

The Florida Department of Education home page for Bright Futures is:

http://www.floridastudentfinancialaid.org/SSFAD/bf/

As a Florida private school, Families of Faith Academy International submits the student's demographics, including verification of graduation, transcript and test scores through the Bright Futures Web Site. Bright Futures is a merit-based scholarship. If you meet the qualifications and file your intent on time, you will be awarded the scholarship. There are additional requirements to remain eligible once your collegiate career has begun, so it's important to stay informed concerning the guidelines. The guidelines listed on these pages are for students enrolled in a public or private school; county-registered homeschoolers have a different evaluation process with specific requirements.

It is your job to know and meet the requirements of the Florida Bright Futures Scholarship Program before high school graduation and throughout your college career. There are additional course requirements, grade point averages, test scores and, in some cases, community service hours that must be met. And there is a time schedule during which these items must be completed to qualify.

It is your responsibility to check the status of your application and your award. It is also your responsibility to provide your correct name, address, date of birth and social security number, and to inform Bright Futures of any changes. Prior to submitting an Initial Student Florida Financial Aid Application, you should report all changes to your guidance counselor in order to update your transcript. After submitting an application, you will receive an application acknowledgement correspondence which will inform you how to create a personal User ID online to update your demographic information and monitor your financial aid history. Bright Futures cannot award you with a scholarship if they cannot contact you.

Step One: Take the Required Courses
Step Two: Make the Grade (GPA)
Step Three: Earn the Score (ACT, SAT, CPT Test)
Step Four: Community Service Hours, If Applicable
Step Five: Initial Student Florida Financial Aid Application
Step Six: Getting Your Money
Who Qualifies, What Disqualifies

 

Step One: Take the Required Courses

Each award level has specific course requirements:

Course Requirements 2014 Graduates
FAS FMS GVS
4 English (3 with substantial writing)
4 Mathematics (Algebra I and above) Note 1: 2012 graduates only may use Algebra IA and Algebra IB as two math credits.
Note 2: 2014 graduates add Geometry as required.
3 Natural Science (2 with substantial lab Biology I and a higher course like Chemistry required)
3 Social Science (For graduation, World History, American History,
.5 American Gov't and
.5 Economics are required)
2 Foreign Language (Sequential in the same language)
4 English (3 with substantial writing)
4 Mathematics (Algebra I and above) Note 1: 2012 graduates only may use Algebra IA and Algebra IB as two math credits.
Note 2: 2014 graduates add Geometry as required.
3 Natural Science (22 with substantial lab Biology I and a higher course like Chemistry required)
3 Social Science (For graduation, World History, American History,
.5 American Gov't and
.5 Economics are required)
2 Foreign Language (Sequential in the same language)
4 English
4 Mathematics (Including Algebra I) Note: 2014 graduates add Geometry
3 Natural Science (2 with substantial lab Biology I and a higher course like Chemistry required)
3 Social Science (For graduation, World History, American History,
.5 American Gov't and
.5 Economics are required)
1 Performing Fine Art (.5 may be a Practical Art)
1 Physical Education (to include Integration of Health)
3 Career and Technical Education credits in one vocational program taken over at least 2 academic years

3 year graduates are not required to have Performing Fine Arts or Physical Education credits.


Step Two: Make the Grade (GPA)

Each award also has specific (GPA) Grade Point Averages. For those who don't average grades for a living, an "A" is equal to 4 points, a "B" is 3 points, a "C" is 2 points, a "D" is 1 point and an "F" is 0 points. Each half credit (one semester of work) gets a grade on the transcript. Bright Futures will take the 16 credits which equate to 32 semester grades, assign the appropriate point value, and divide the number of points by 32.

The Bright Futures GPA is seldom the same as the one listed on the student's transcript because Bright Futures only uses the core classes, not every course taken.

GPA Requirements 2014 Graduates
FAS FMS GVS
3.5 Weighted GPA using the 16 required courses
Note 1: May use up to two additional credits from courses in the academic areas listed above and/or AP, IB or AICE fine arts courses to raise the GPA
Note 2: GPA's are not rounded; a 3.49999 does not qualify
3.0 Weighted GPA using the 16 required courses
Note 1: May use up to two additional credits from courses in the academic areas listed above and/or AP, IB or AICE fine arts courses to raise the GPA
Note 2: GPA's are not rounded; a 2.9999 does not qualify
3.0 Weighted GPA using the 16 required courses (For 3 year graduates it's 14 core courses)

3.5 Unweighted GPA in a minimum of three Career and Technical Education credits in one vocational program taken over two academic years
Note : GPA's are not rounded; a 2.99999 does not qualify

 

Step Three: Earn the Score (ACT, SAT, PERT Test)

Each award has specific test requirements as listed below. Both the ACT and SAT offer a test date in June of each year, which is after our normal graduation date. However, Bright Futures will use that score for qualifing purposes provided the student completed the Initial Student Florida Financial Aid Application before his or her graduation date. Be sure the chart you are using is for the correct graduation year. There are four charts covering the next four graduation years.

ACT and SAT tests are offered at several locations throughout the world.The best way to register for the test is on-line. When registering, use Families of Faith Christian Academy International's code number, which is: 100-829. That identifies you as our student, and a copy of the test comes to the administrative office automatically.

For the SAT test go to: http://www.collegeboard.com

For the ACT test go to: http://www.actstudent.org

The PERT is given at most community colleges; most of our students use PSC or HCC. Make sure to send a copy of the PERT printout to the school office, or it will not be in the file.

Test Requirements 2014 Graduates
FAS FMS GVS
SAT 1290
Based on the combined Critical Reading and Math Sections only (excluding the Writing Section)
ACT 29
Best composite score (excluding the Writing Section)
SAT 1170
Based on the combined Critical Reading and Math Sections only (excluding the Writing Section)
ACT 26
Best composite score (excluding the Writing Section)
SAT
Critical Reading 440
Math 440
ACT
English 17
Reading 18
Math 19

PERT Test

Reading 104
Writing 99
Math 113

 

Step Four: Community Service Hours

All Bright Futures Scholarship awards now have a community service requirement.

Community Service Hours 2014 Graduates
FAS FMS GVS
100 Hours
75 Hours
30 Hours

Students must complete community service hours during high school and by high school graduation. (The summer between the end of 8th grade counts.) The hours must meet the approval of the school's administrative office. Community service hours may not be hours that benefit the student financially or materially, or be service to family members, defined as: parents, grandparents, siblings, aunts, uncles, cousins, nieces, nephews, and spouses, including all step relations. Activities can be from a wide range of areas including, but not limited to:
Health Care
Child Care
Literacy Training and Education
Neighborhood Improvement
Public Safety
Support Services for Students with Disabilities
Mentoring

The hours should be earned throughout a student's high school career and doucmented on approved school forms, or signed letters on the organizations letterhead where the service was preformed. This is not something you want to be trying to finish the last few weeks of your senior year. To download the Community Service form, click the link below.

Community Service Log.pdf

Step Five: Initial Student Florida Financial Aid Application

To receive the Bright Futures Scholarship you must apply.
* You must submit a completed (error-free) Initial Student Florida Financial Aid Application.
*It must be submitted during your last year in high school (after December 1 and prior to graduation).
* You must apply during your last year in high school, before graduation,* or you will forfeit all future eligibility for a Bright Futures Scholarship.
*We have provided a step-by-step guide to all of the 38 questions on the 2043 Senior Update page on this web site.

To apply online, visit
http://www.floridastudentfinancialaid.org/SSFAD/home/ApplyHere.htm
1) Select “State Grants, Scholarships & Applications” and
2) Click on “Apply Here.”

The application gives the Florida Department of Education permission to evaluate your high school transcript and test scores for eligibility for state scholarships and grants, including a Bright Futures Scholarship. You may apply prior to meeting all requirements.

If you do not apply, Families of Faith cannot submit your information, and you will not ever (and that means never) get the scholarship you worked for.

Step Six: Getting Your Money

This last step seems silly, but, if you don't update your profile with Bright Futures, naming the college you will attend, the college will not be able to get the money. It's a good idea to stop by the Financial Aid office at your college to confirm that the update is in the system and they will get the funds.

The Florida Department of Education will:
• Begin funding your scholarship during the fall term following your high school graduation. The academic year begins in the fall and ends in the summer. Scholarship recipients are not eligible for funding during the summer term immediately following high school graduation; thereafter, summer disbursements are only made if funds are available. Check our web site each year for summer funding information.
• Send scholarship funds to the eligible Florida postsecondary institution of your choice prior to the beginning of each term. The money will then be applied to your account after the last day of the drop/add period at your college.

Who Qualifies, What Disqualifies

All three scholarships have the same initial eligibility requirements for the student and/or parents. There are additional requirements that must be maintained once a student begins college, as well.

1-Be a Florida resident and a U.S. citizen or eligible non-citizen, as determined by the student's postsecondary institution. (As part of the college enrollment process, each college will require documentation---i.e., drivers license, voter registration card, etc.--- to establish the residential status of the student and/or qualifying parents.)

2-Apply for a scholarship from the program by high school graduation. (This is the Initial Student Florida Financial Aid Application (FFAA) listed as number four in the nine-step plan on page 5 of the Administrator section.)

3- Earn a standard Florida high school diploma or its equivalent. (A standard high school diploma is defined in Florida Statues 1003.429, 1003.43 and 1003.435.  Its equivalent applies to home school and/or GED students.)

4-Be accepted by and enroll in an eligible Florida public or independent postsecondary education institution within 3 years of high school graduation.  If a student enlists directly into the military after graduation, the three-year period begins on the date the student is separated from active duty. (Most colleges and universities in the state of Florida are eligible. There are a few Christian colleges that do not take federal or state money, so students should check the eligibility before committing to a specific college.)

5-Not have been found guilty of, or pled nolo contendere to, a felony charge, unless the student has been granted clemency by the Governor and Cabinet sitting as the Executive Office of Clemency. (If you rob liquor stores for extra cash, the taxpayers of Florida will not help pay your college tuition. Sounds fair to me.)

6- Once you start college, you must be enrolled for at least six semester credit hours.

7-This was added late in the year for graduates in 2011. The submission of a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is now an annual requirement for Bright Futures eligibility.  Note: The student’s FAFSA does not have to indicate need; however, it must be completed and processed error-free prior to a student’s first disbursement of an award. (The Florida State Programs May 15th deadline does not apply to Bright Futures.)  Visit the website at www.fafsa.ed.gov for online processing. (This is something both the student and parent(s) must complete, no FASFA, no money! Parents will need to have completed preparing their income tax filings before they can complete the FASFA. This applies to students if they had earned income, as well. Some parents are not required to file, but it is recommended that they file each year their student is in college as it will greatly speed up the approval process.)

You will be Disqualified if:
• You are found guilty of, or plead no contest to, a felony charge.
• Do not graduate from high school