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San Diego High School Seniors Race to Submit for College Cash

San Diego High School Seniors Race to Submit for College Cash

The fourth annual San Diego County Race to Submit campaign for high school seniors completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and the California Dream Act Application (CADAA) has concluded. The campaign ran from last fall to earlier this spring. 
“I am excited to share that as a county, we had tremendous growth ending at 57% overall FAFSA/CADAA completion rate – up from 52% in 2022,” said San Diego County Office of Education (SDCOE) School Counseling Counselor Tanya Bulette. “We are still under the statewide completion rate of 61%, however FAFSA/CADAA completions will continue to be tracked until June, so there is still time to bring our numbers up.” 

The California Student Aid Commission (CSAC) Race to Submit Online Dashboard tracks the number of FAFSAs and CADAAs completed by the senior class at the high school, district, county, and state level. In October 2022, CSAC certified census enrollment counts from the California Department of Education and provided progress updates of the following data twice a week (Thursday and Sunday nights):  

  • FAFSA/CADAA submission and completion rates  
  • Number of financial aid applications matched to GPAs  
  • Number of Cal Grant award offers  
  • Compare two years of application data – class of 2023 vs. class of 2022 

In fall 2022, SDCOE launched the first San Diego County Dashboard to share leaderboard results of schools and districts in our own county-wide campaign. Data was pulled from the CSAC Race to Submit Dashboard. Six categories, based on senior class enrollment at each high school, and three categories for overall results at the district level were created.
Results, including our county leaderboard champions by school and district, as well as our "Highest Growth" schools, are available online. All recipients were honored on May 12 at Honoring Excellence in School Counseling Leadership, which is included with our new event, School Counselor IMPACT Day. 
“We know that finances play an enormous role in whether a student applies to college so I want to congratulate and thank all of our high school counselors who embraced this work to highlight the importance of increasing opportunities for students to understand the financial aid process,” added Bulette. 

Under AB 469, local educational agencies (LEAs) are required to confirm that high school seniors complete a FAFSA or CADAA. Students may alternatively complete an opt-out form, which shall be collected and retained by the high school. These requirements apply beginning with the 2022-23 school year for the 2023-2024 FAFSA/CADAA application cycle that started on October 1, 2022. 

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