Two Kinds of Poor?

10 11 2006

I read this:

Friday night lights in the Valley
Residents agree their new $4.5 million football stadium is the best thing that’s happened to this small Texas town

SAN BENITO — With one of every two of its children expected to drop out of high school and all of them eligible for free school lunches, this town deals with its social problems and clings to its modest circumstances much like the rest of the Rio Grande Valley.

. . .

And then I read this:

At DPS, free path to college

Graduates from three Denver high schools could get a free college education at one of 33 Colorado colleges under a new scholarship program announced Thursday by Denver Public Schools and city leaders.

The Denver Scholarship Foundation could help send about 700 graduating seniors from Montbello, South and Abraham Lincoln high schools to college in a pilot program.

By spring, officials hope to expand the effort to students from all DPS high schools.

Starter funds for the program come from millionaire oilman Tim Marquez, who graduated from Abraham Lincoln High. He and his wife, Bernadette, have given a “substantial amount” of money to start an endowment for the foundation, Marquez said. He declined to say how much.

He hopes the program will have a $200 million endowment within five years.

With that $200 million, which is estimated to kick off $10 million a year in interest, officials think they’ll have to raise another $10 million every year to send about 6,500 Denver graduates to college at a time, Marquez said.

. . .

In Denver, 63 percent of students qualify for free or reduced-price lunch – a federal benchmark of poverty.

Even for the other 37 percent, college could be out of reach, said Evan Icolari, associate director for financial aid at the University of Colorado at Boulder.

 

It just made me say: “Hmmmmm. . .”

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