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SISD Government, economic teachers help seniors fill out FAFSA for college funds

Socorro Independent School District high school government and economic teachers are helping seniors fill out the 2020 Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) during the fall semester.

“The FAFSA equals money for college,” said SISD Advanced Academics coordinator Frank Clark. “We want all students to attend college or be workforce ready when they leave our schools and completing the FAFSA during school hours gives students the opportunity to take a step closer towards their college education.”

Teachers are guiding students through a series of specified lessons from learning the difference between the types of aid available to how to create a FAFSA ID.

Students can fill out their FAFSA applications with the assistance of school counselors, Go Center specialists, and early college high school advisors. As part of Team SISD’s Operation College Bound efforts, the district has been committed to helping seniors complete the FAFSA. It is an important element of ensuring all students are prepared for college, career, and life.

During these unprecedented times with remote learning amid the COVID-19 pandemic, SISD educators brainstormed ways to help seniors successfully complete the FAFSA. They wanted to offer the same support that has been provided in the past, such as preparing documents, collecting information needed for the process, and submitting the application.

SISD educators are helping by setting up Microsoft Teams meetings to guide students through the process from home and Team SISD has provided an instructional Nearpod lesson that students can access from anywhere on any device.

“I was very pleased to see that the district put out the FSA ID Nearpod because it was really beneficial for us,” said Pebble Hills High School government and economics teacher Fernando Ruiz. “This is a unique environment we’re in and we need to make sure that we get as much value out of it as we possibly can.”

Most universities decide early on what resources they can make available to students, so the sooner students complete the process the better, Ruiz said.

In addition, even if students do not qualify for federal aid, completing the FAFSA could result in other types of aid being awarded.

Pebble Hills High School senior Anakarina Kassar, who intends to attend college to study business marketing, understands the importance of investing the time to complete the FAFSA process.

“It is probably the most important part of preparing for college because you can apply to colleges and maybe get accepted into the one you want, but you need to be able to pay for it,” Kassar said.

Team SISD will remain committed to help students, parents, and families to be familiar with the FAFSA process, especially because next year applying for financial aid will be a graduation requirement in Texas.

“As a district we look at our students as a whole and we want to help them grow,” Ruiz said. “This is just one more way of achieving that.”

Learn more about the FAFSA via this link or contact your high school counselor, government or economics teacher in Team SISD.