Funding Information on the State Student Incentive Grant Program and Other Need-Based Student Aid Programs

HRD-84-19: Published: Dec 29, 1983. Publicly Released: Jan 30, 1984.

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Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO provided information on the Department of Education's State Student Incentive Grant (SSIG) program, concerning: (1) how the program is administered at the state level; (2) how much sederal SSIG money has been received and generated by the states; (3) the average income of students receiving SSIG awards; and (4) the impact of fiscal year (FY) 1982 funding reductions on the program in FY 1982 as well as the potential impact of further reductions.

GAO noted that sederal funds are made available to states to encourage them to develop or expand grant assistance to postsecondary students with substantial financial needs. Federal funds are allocated based on a formula reflecting each state's student enrollment size. GAO found that: (1) since program initiation, from FY 1974 through 1982, federal appropriated funds and state matching funds have made available about $1 billion for program purposes; (2) eligible recipients in 1981 had an average family income of $11,046 while the average individual award was $581; and (3) program reductions of $3 million dollars in FY 1982 had a greater impact on the number of award recipients in some states than in others. GAO believes that further funding reductions will result in even fewer students' receiving program grants or in students' receiving smaller awards.

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