Program to help military children in trouble

The state program sending 20,000 children of Texas veterans to college is in limbo.

The state program, Hazelwood, which currently sends nearly 20,000 children of Texas veterans to college is in question. 

Universities said that they can't afford the program that many veterans rely on for their children. 

"In the back of my mind I've always thought to myself, we have the Hazelwood act, and dependents can take advantage of that so I was like she'll be covered you know," said Audrey Baugher, an army veteran.

Baugher is concerned about her daughter's future education. 

In 2009, lawmakers voted to extend Hazelwood's program for military children referred to as 'legacy students.' They expected about 1,000 students would enroll by 2014. 

Today, there are nearly 19,000 students enrolled, and colleges argue the program costs too much money. Many colleges said it was forcing traditional students to pay more in order to offset the cost. 

John Borstler, a Marine Corps veteran, helps connect veterans to resources for a living. He said the cost of 'legacy students' is offset by veterans pouring federal tuition assistance into Texas colleges. 

"The metrics really don't line up, and it doesn't make sense for them to not only to take these benefits from veterans but from their dependents as well," said Borstler. 

Lawmakers failed to decided Hazelwood's future on Tuesday, leaving the future of the program for 'legacy students' in limbo. 

Universities like the University of Houston have outlined the financial impact of the Hazlewood exemption. They noted millions of dollars in lost revenue since legacy students started enrolling in 2009. 


(© 2016 KHOU)


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