Cal Grant B Foster Youth Award

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On July 1, 2018 California expanded the Cal Grant Program to allow students who are current and former foster youth to be eligible for increased Cal Grant eligibility.

  • Foster youth students may renew their Cal Grant B awards for the equivalent of eight years of full-time attendance in an undergraduate program.
  • Foster youth students have until their 26th birthday to apply for the Cal Grant High School Entitlement Award.
  • Foster youth students attending a California Community College can apply for a High School Entitlement award through September 2nd (rather than March 2nd).

WHERE THE FOSTER YOUTH CHANGES CAME FROM

Assembly Bill No. 1809

Assembly Bill No. 1809 expanded the application window, eligibility length, and deadline for students who are current or former foster youth. The 3 Provisions added are:

  • Expand lifetime Cal Grant Eligibility – California Education Code Section 69433.6 (e) (1)
    • Previously a maximum of 4 years of lifetime grant eligibility and now a maximum of 8 years of lifetime grant eligibility or until you complete a bachelor’s degree.
    • The increased eligibility applies to students who are High School Entitlement (E1), Transfer Entitlement (E2), March 2nd Competitive (C1), and September 2nd Competitive (C2) Awardees.
  • Extend High School Entitlement Window – California Education Code Section 69435.3 (1) (A) (i)
    • Extends the time for a current and former foster youth who is a recent or upcoming High School graduate to apply and still be awarded a Cal Grant High School Entitlement Award.
    • Foster Youth under the age of 26 on July 1st of the award year will now be eligible to be considered in the High School Entitlement cycle.
    • High School GPA is still required by the application deadline to be considered for the Cal Grant High School Entitlement Award.
  • Extend High School Graduation Entitlement Application Deadline for Foster Youth attending California Community Colleges – Sec. 13. California Education Code Section 69435.3 (1) (A) (ii)
    • Students who are current or former foster youth under the age of 26 on July 1st of the award year and attending a California Community College may now apply for a High School Entitlement Cal Grant award by the deadline of September 2nd of the school year.
    • Foster youth students at all other school segments must still apply by March 2nd to receive High School Entitlement consideration.

How to be Certified as a Foster Youth

A current or former Foster Youth for this program is defined as “a person whose dependency was established or continued by the court on or after the date on which the person reached 13 years of age”.

  • This aligns with question number 53 for the 2020-21 Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) or California Dream Act Application (CADAA). Answer “yes” if at anytime since you turned 13:

    • You had no living parent (biological or adoptive), even if you are now adopted; or
    • You were in foster care, even if you are no longer in foster care today; or
    • You were a dependent or ward of the court, even if you are no longer a dependent or ward of the court today.
      • For student aid purposes, someone incarcerated is not considered a ward of the court.
  • A financial aid administrator at your school may require you to provide proof that you were in foster care or a dependent or ward of the court.