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Minnesota lawmakers say they've struck a deal to help former foster kids pay for college next year

Minnesota lawmakers say they've found $5 million to plug a funding gap that threatened to upend the college careers of former foster children who use state grants to pay for tuition and living expenses.

"This is an extremely important issue for us," said Sen. Omar Fateh, DFL-Minneapolis, who chairs the Senate Higher Education Committee. "What we know is that these grants help a population that is less likely to go to college and more likely to drop out."

Hundreds of Minnesotans rely on the Fostering Independence Grant Program to help cover tuition and housing costs. Leaders with the state's Office of Higher Education warned lawmakers earlier this year that inflation and increased demand were squeezing the program's budget, so they'd need to find another $5 million or place about 40% of applicants on a waitlist.


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