News

NEWS:  S.C. disproportionately funds merit-based scholarships, bucking national trend

NEWS:  S.C. disproportionately funds merit-based scholarships, bucking national trend

By Lindsay Street, Statehouse correspondent  |  Part 2 of 2  |  South Carolina’s policymakers will have a chance to examine how it uses public dollars for students’ tuition when the legislature reconvenes next year.

South Carolina’s public colleges have some of the most expensive tuition and fees in the nation, as outlined in part one of this series.  At the same time,  the publicly-funded scholarships that aid in-state students in attaining a higher education largely go toward students earning high grades instead of students who have a demonstrated financial need, according to a national education policy analyst.

by · 10/20/2017 · News
NEWS: Loss of federal program imperils state’s record-low teen pregnancy rate

NEWS: Loss of federal program imperils state’s record-low teen pregnancy rate

By Lindsay Street, Statehouse correspondent  |  With the good news of the state’s lowest teenage pregnancy rate in recent history, there is a little bad news: the federal program that awarded South Carolina $6.53 million to prevent teen pregnancies will come to an end June 30, 2018, according to a S.C. nonprofit focused on preventing teenage pregnancy. The Teen Pregnancy Prevention Program in the Office of Adolescent Health in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has been doling out funds for the last three years.

Statehouse Report originally reported on the proposed cut to the program in July, and the cut was made official in the federal budget a few weeks later. Already, some teen prevention programs around the nation are looking at scaling back efforts or closing altogether, according to multiple media reports.

by · 10/18/2017 · News, News briefs
TOP FIVE:  On voting machines, birth, juvenile prosecution, security and student loans

TOP FIVE:  On voting machines, birth, juvenile prosecution, security and student loans

By Lindsay Street, Statehouse correspondent | Here are five policy-related stories that impact South Carolina that you may have missed over the last week:

1. Paperless-voting states, including South Carolina, work to secure votes

2. More women are giving birth in South Carolina without having prenatal care

3. South Carolina one of four states to raise the age of juvenile prosecution

4. South Carolina one of minority of states with no security-breach legislative changes in 2017

5. Student loan crisis recorded for African-American students

Click the link above to find out more on each story.

by · 10/17/2017 · News, Top Five
NEWS:  High tuition, high aid at S.C. public colleges pose problems

NEWS:  High tuition, high aid at S.C. public colleges pose problems

By Lindsay Street, Statehouse correspondent  |  Part 1 of 2  |   A continuing slide in state funds to public colleges is contributing toward making higher education more unattainable — and could cause South Carolina to miss out on the future global economy, according to an national education policy analyst.

Tuition rates are on the rise at South Carolina’s public colleges, largely in response to losing a third of state funding in the last 10 years. At the same time, state funds for merit-based, lottery scholarships have increased dramatically to about $300 million this year, an increase of about 12 percent per year.

These two factors have combined to make South Carolina colleges to be known as “high-tuition, high-aid,” which impedes access to higher education with the possibility of hurting the state’s economic future, according to Thomas Harnisch …

by · 10/13/2017 · News
NEWS: Noble joins gov’s race; 3 Dems, 4 GOPers now running

NEWS: Noble joins gov’s race; 3 Dems, 4 GOPers now running

Noble to attack culture of corruption at Statehouse

Staff reports (updated, 10 a.m.)  |   Charleston businessman Phil Noble is the latest Democrat to join the race to be elected governor in 2018.  He announced his candidacy this morning in Charleston. 

Last week, state Rep. James Smith, D-Richland, joined the race.  Previously, self-described “dark horse” Democratic candidate Philip Cheney of Anderson has announced he was running.

Republicans running for the seat held by the GOP since 2003 include incumbent Henry McMaster, Lt. Gov. Kevin Bryant of Anderson, former Lt. Gov. Yancey McGill of Kingstree and former state agency head Catherine Templeton of Mount Pleasant.

by · 10/11/2017 · 2018, News
UPDATE:  S.C. agency says funding will continue for children’s insurance program

UPDATE:  S.C. agency says funding will continue for children’s insurance program

By Lindsay Street, Statehouse correspondent  |  Congress has missed the deadline to continue funding of the  federal program that insures millions of children nationwide and tens of thousands in South Carolina.

Following the Friday publication of this story, the state agency that heads the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP)  said Friday the state of South Carolina would continue to fund the multi-million dollar program if federal funds dry up.   Last week, the S.C. Department of Health and Human Services was slow to respond to several questions about the CHIP program and missed a  deadline for Friday’s article.

In South Carolina, CHIP extends Medicaid-like coverage to children whose families earn more than 100 percent of the poverty level and up to 208 percent of the poverty level. There are an estimated 77,000 children receiving this no-cost insurance. The federal government allocated $154.2 million in 2017 for the program with no matching state dollars.

by · 10/10/2017 · News, News briefs
TOP FIVE:  Teen pregnancy, teachers, insurance, youth camps, storm impact

TOP FIVE: Teen pregnancy, teachers, insurance, youth camps, storm impact

Here are five stories related to South Carolina you might have missed:

1. Teen birth rate plummets, but STDs remain a concern in South Carolina

2. Four-in-five South Carolina teachers are white

3. South Carolina is one of 15 states to file, but not pass legislation to allow out-of-state insurance purchase

4. Number of escapes from youth camps is unknown

5. Hurricanes impact jobs — but they aren’t completely to blame for weak report

Click the headline above to learn more.

by · 10/10/2017 · News, Top Five
NEWS:  Loss of federal program could more than double uninsured S.C. children

NEWS:  Loss of federal program could more than double uninsured S.C. children

By Lindsay Street, Statehouse correspondent  |  Congressional inaction could cause an estimated 70,000 children in South Carolina to lose health insurance coverage, increasing the number of uninsured children by about 160 percent.

Statewide today, there are about 44,000 South Carolina children without health insurance.

In 2016, 96 percent of South Carolina children had health insurance, thanks to in part to the federal Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP).  It extends free child medical coverage for families that make too much to qualify for Medicaid but still make below 208 percent of poverty …

by · 10/06/2017 · News