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Glendale Unified Receives $200,000 Grant to Provide College Savings Accounts for Students

 

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MEDIA RELEASE

Glendale Unified School District


Media Contact:
GUSD Public Information Office
Kristine Nam, Communications Director
(818) 241-3111 x1218

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Distribution Date: October 11, 2019 

 

Glendale Unified Receives $200,000 Grant to Provide College Savings Accounts for Students


GLENDALE, CA – Glendale Unified School District has been awarded a 200,000-dollar Every Kid Counts College Savings Program grant, administered through the California Student Aid Commission. The grant funds programs that incentivize families with children to open and maintain college savings accounts. Glendale Unified was the only school district in the State to receive funding for this program.


Beginning with the 2019-20 school year, Glendale Unified will open a college savings account for each of the district’s 2,000 first grade students and deposit the first 50 dollars into each account. This initiative will be funded by the Every Kid Counts grant and private donations.


Glendale Unified first piloted a college savings program in 2018 at Cerritos Elementary and Roosevelt Middle School. The district opened 529 college savings accounts through ScholarShare, California’s state-sponsored 529 savings plan, for 100 socio-economically disadvantaged students and provided a 100-dollar deposit to start each account. The deposits were funded by a generous donation from the Glendale Educational Foundation. The State also funded a dollar-for-dollar contribution into each student’s account at the end of the fiscal year based on the student’s end-of-year balance.


Earlier this year, Assemblymember Adrin Nazarian led efforts to include 25 million dollars in the state budget to create a statewide child savings account program known as the California Kids Investment and Development Savings (KIDS) program. Glendale Unified Board Member Nayiri Nahabedian initially introduced the initiative to Assemblymember Nazarian and served as an advisor on the KIDS policy. On October 2, Governor Gavin Newsom signed Assembly Bill 114, which expanded the KIDS program to families at all income levels and authorized ScholarShare to open a KIDS account and provide a small seed deposit for every California resident born on or after July 1, 2020.


“I am proud of our district’s forward-thinking approach to promoting a college-going culture by creating college savings accounts for every student," said Glendale Unified Board of Education President Jennifer Freemon. “We are thrilled that the governor has approved a plan that supports our mission, and we thank Assemblymember Nazarian and Board Member Nahabedian for championing this important initiative at the state level. Ms. Nahabedian was a strong advocate of its essential components throughout the legislative process."


For further information, please email Kristine Nam or call the Public Information Office at (818) 241-3111 x1218.

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