On June 18, 2019, members of the Florida Legislature signed Senate Bill 190 in Tallahassee, which requires the Florida Bright Futures scholarship SAT score requirement to increase. Bright futures is a scholarship that awards students money depending upon a certain SAT score. Although this bill was passed earlier this year, it will not affect this year’s graduating class of 2020; instead, it will take effect for the graduating class of 2021.
There are two different types of scholarships included in the Florida Bright Futures Scholarship Program. The Florida Academic Scholarship (FAS) recipients receive a scholarship equal to 100% of tuition, applicable fees and summer funding; this award is equivalent to $212.71 per credit hour. The Florida Medallion Scholarship (FMS) awards students 75% of tuition and applicable fees in only the fall/spring semesters.The FMS awardees may be eligible to receive summer awards; this scholarship is equivalent to $159.53 per credit hour.
As of right now, the current SAT score requirement for the FAS is 1290. However, it will rise to 1330 when it comes time for current juniors to apply. Additionally, the current SAT score requirement for the FMS is 1170 and in the following school year, it will change to 1210.
“I am just honestly a little mad about how it gets raised now when all of the others [graduating classes] before us had a lower requirement. But, all it means is that I have to try even harder to get that score,” junior Madeline Dwyer said.
Junior year has been said to be the most stressful year by many students. Not only do a plethora of students partake in Advanced Placement classes and Dual-Enrollment classes to raise their GPAs and gain college credit, they are also studying and working with tutors to get the score they want for the upcoming SATs.
“I think that while high standards should be expected, any time you try to take away the opportunity for a student to achieve a higher education that is based on one exam, that is not helpful. Many students will only be able to go to school with Bright Futures dollars, and not every student is able to afford the SAT prep that other students can. Therefore, it is not an even playing field,” junior Ella Singer said.
Although many people may have different opinions about this subject, this change may cause students to work harder and earn the award. The next SAT will take place on Saturday, Oct. 5 and the last day to register is Friday, Sep. 6.