The Department of Education says that funding for the Governor’s Honors Program, the prestigious summer enrichment program offered to the state’s top high school students, has been restored for 2011, but at the reduced rate originally sought by the governor. That means the traditional six week program at Valdosta State University pares back to four weeks next year.
But at least it will happen in 2011. The Senate had stripped the 2011 funding, setting off a firestorm of protest from ex GHP attendees who testified to the program’s life-changing powers. A Facebook page to save the program has more than 3,000 members.
DOE’s Matt Cardoza said that the funding was restored in the budget that came out of conference committee, but he can’t say for sure that nothing will change in these last six hours of the General Assembly. “Your guess is as good as mine,” he said. “I certainly hope it stays as it is because we don’t want to see this program cut.”
Cardoza was uncertain what would happen to the beloved honors program in 2012, whether it would stay at four weeks or return to its usual six weeks if the economy improves.