Politics & Government

Senate panel approves extending lottery-sponsored scholarships to apprenticeships

The Kentucky Senate Education Committee unanimously approved a bill Wednesday to allow the use of lottery-sponsored scholarships for apprenticeships.

The Kentucky Educational Excellence Scholarship program, funded by the state lottery, provides college scholarships to students who earn at least a 2.5 grade point average each year they attend a Kentucky high school. The better they do in high school, the more they earn toward college.

The state Labor Cabinet successfully urged the Senate committee to amend House Bill 206 to allow KEES scholarships to be used for apprenticeship training programs for jobs such as electricians and plumbers.

The bill also establishes a Dual Credit Scholarship program backed by Gov. Matt Bevin and Education Secretary Hal Heiner.

It allocates $7.5 million a year to all school districts across Kentucky for any high school senior to earn credit for up to two college courses, at no cost to the student.

Dual credit allows high school students to receive both high school and college credit at the same time for approved coursework. The course may be taken at the local high school or postsecondary institution. The program will be administered by the Kentucky Higher Education Assistance Authority.

HB 206 now goes to the full Senate for its consideration.

Jack Brammer: (502) 227-1198, @BGPolitics