Class of 2020 wonder if scholarship deadlines will be extended due to pandemic

Reporter: Stephanie Byrne
Published: Updated:
Florida Bright Futures Scholarship Program

As the coronavirus throws a series of curveballs at the class of 2020, some students want to plan for the future by qualifying and applying for Bright Futures Scholarships.

The question is, will that deadline be extended as standardized test dates for the SAT are canceled?

For graduating seniors, this year isn’t going by the book.

“I know my classmates are very disappointed that we did not get to experience a prom or graduation,” said Anastasia Fox of Cape Coral.

It means preparing for the future, which for some includes testing, earning scholarships and applying to colleges.

“She has a dream of going to the University of Florida,” said Anastasia’s mother, Mary.

For them, the Bright Futures Scholarship would help relieve some of the financial burdens of college.

“Not only paying for classes and books, also paying for room and board, and food, and things like that,” Mary said.

One requirement to qualify for some of the scholarships is test score minimums.

“I was only a few points away,” Anastasia said, and as coronavirus has led to testing cancellations, seniors like her haven’t been able to retake them to boost their score.

While the Bright Futures application isn’t due until the end of August, tests must be completed by June 30.

“We don’t know when the decision will be made, and we don’t what options they have on the table. We’re just hoping for a fair compromise,” Mary said. In the meantime, she says, “We are all behind you. We’re supporting you in every way we know how and we’re just really incredibly proud of you.”

Friends and family are on standby as they stand behind the class of 2020.

We contacted the Florida Department of Education to see if there are plans to move the Bright Futures application deadline. The department received our question and said it will get back to us.

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