Talbot County receives over $400,000 in lottery dollars to assist students

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TALBOT COUNTY, Ga. (WRBL) – The Georgia Lottery Corporation recently released its profits from the 2020 fiscal year and its contribution to students in Georgia. Talbot County received $457,252 lottery dollars to assist students.

Jonathan Taylor, the Principal of Central Elementary and High School, said he believes it is a great program to assist students who want to pursue higher education. He also said it’s a great reward for students who maintain a high GPA throughout high school.

“It helps them to have less to think about as far as paying for school because you know the HOPE Scholarship or the HOPE Grant is going to pay at least 85% of that tuition depends on where you go in Georgia,” said Taylor.

$367,984 of the lottery dollars went to 110, 2020 seniors as part of the Helping Outstanding Pupils Educationally Grant and Scholarship programs. The HOPE Grant program is for students who would like to continue their education in a trade school, no GPA minimum is required.

The HOPE Scholarship assists students who decide to continue their education in a traditional 4-year institution. In order to be eligible for the HOPE Scholarship students must graduate with a minimum 3.0 GPA. Both programs require that students continue their education at institutions in Georgia.

Kimberley Hatcher, a graduate of Central High School and now a business teacher at Central High School, said she is a recipient of the HOPE Scholarship and is an advocate of the program for future graduates.

“It’s important that they recognize that GPA is important so that they can actually be recipients and it will alleviate the cost for their families as well especially coming from a low-income rural area,” said Hatcher.

Hatcher said the funds she received as part of the HOPE Scholarships helped her a lot during her time at Columbus State University.

The PreK program at Central Elementary School is funded completely with lottery dollars which includes the teacher’s salary and all supplies for the students.

Jacqueline Marshall, the PreK Teacher at Central Elementary School, said she buys all her supplies for her students with the lottery dollars.

“It’s great to have the money from the lottery to help the PreK students who are unable to otherwise get pencils, papers or any of that stuff. The materials that was use for them to get the experience to learn different things the PreK lottery funds it for me,” said Marshall.

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