Single-Parents To Receive Help For College

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Single parents seeking a college education will now have some help from the state and area schools.

Monday, Kentucky Governor Ernie Fletcher was in town. for the groundbreaking of the "Scholar House".

As part of a state-wide initiative, the "Scholar House" will accommodate more than 56 single parents and their children up to 5 years old.

It will also have an on-site child care center.

Single parents enrolled in the "scholar house" program will be able to go to their classes while daycare is provided to them by Community Action of Southern Kentucky.

They will be allowed to live in this single-parent housing while they pursue their education.

Governor Fletcher says this "Scholar House" will provide a chance to those who might have thought their education would end because of having a child.

"It's an opportunity they would not have otherwise of having a support system. Let me tell you, its hard enough to raise kids with 2 parents, much less with just one," says Governor Fletcher.

WKU student and mother-to- be Colleen West is anxious about her baby's arrival in October.

However, she knows that her life and ability to get her education will change dramatically.

"Trying to provide daycare for the child, go to class and go to work, feeding the child, staying up late at night studying," she lists.

West says with all the extra things that come with having a baby the "Scholar House" would be a great benefit.

West's mother also had the task of "juggling it all."

"She tried to balance it the best she could; going to work, going to classes at Belmont University," West recalls.

But West feels in today's world she's going to need extra help.

The "Scholar House" will offer programs to single parents as well as the 100 child daycare and living facilities.

These programs will educate the enrolled parents on a number of issues single parents face.

"Head Start will work in conjunction with the "Scholar House" to provide parent training and different programs: budgeting, extra resources, whats available to them in the community," says Cheryl Allen of the Community Action of Southern Kentucky.

West says offering the "Scholar House" to full-time students at Western and the Bowling Green Community and Technical Colleges, will allow students like her the opportunity to make the grade and give their children a better life.

"It'll help out a lot so that I can have more focus time on my studies and get that "A" and not a "D".

This is the first "Scholar House" in Kentucky.

There are plans to put more throughout the state.

The services are free, as long as the single-parent is a full-time student

For more information on the "Scholar House" program, contact Deborah Williams at (270) 796- 4176.