HARRISBURG – Allegheny County Rep. Jessica Benham has introduced legislation aimed at expanding the eligibility requirements for the Fostering Independence Tuition Waiver Program to include children who are placed into kinship care. Currently, the waiver program only serves children who have been, or are currently in, the foster care system. House Bill 2288 would ease the financial struggles facing children in kinship care, providing a path for the same educational opportunities as those in foster care. There’s an estimated 202,000 children in households headed by their grandparents or other relatives. Benham said most kinship caregivers cannot afford a child’s college tuition because they didn’t plan on saving for it or are on a fixed income. The bill is now before the PA House Education Committee.

REP. JESSICA BENHAM