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Get answers to your questions about Say Yes

Last night's webinar answered many of the questions you might have about Say Yes' plans for Buffalo, including the college tuition guarantee.

Here's a sampling of some of the questions and answers we had:

Who will be eligible for the tuition guarantee?

Students who live in the City of Buffalo and graduate from a Buffalo district high school or charter high school within the City of Buffalo. Private school students are not eligible.

Students who have not been enrolled in a Buffalo district or charter school since second grade or earlier are eligible for the tuition guarantee, but at a slightly reduced amount.

When will this go into effect?

The first eligible students will be the Class of 2013.

What expenses are covered?

The guarantee covers tuition only -- not books, fees, room and board or anything else.

Are there restrictions on family income?


What colleges are participating?

Right now, any SUNY or CUNY college is an option. Say Yes is working on building partnerships with private colleges, and is likely to announce a list of participating private colleges soon. But at this point, the tuition guarantee applies only to public colleges in New York.

How much of the tuition will Say Yes cover?

Every participating student first has to fill out a FAFSA form. If a student qualifies for TAP or a Pell grant, that amount is taken off the total that Say Yes contributes. For instance, if a student qualifies for $2,000 in TAP, but tuition is $5,000, Say Yes will contribute $3,000.

Say Yes will pay up to $5,000 a year per student.

More information about each of these questions, as well as a variety of others, is available by listening to a replay of the webinar, which will be available for 90 days at

You just have to take a minute to fill out the registration form online, and then you'll be able to access it. If you've already registered, all you need to do is enter your email address, and then you'll be able to get to it.

Most of the webinar is audio, so you'll want to have the volume on your computer turned up, or have your headphones on.

- Mary Pasciak

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About School Zone

Denise Jewell Gee

Denise Jewell Gee

Denise Jewell Gee joined The Buffalo News in 2007 and currently covers education and suburban schools. She also writes a column for the City & Region section and previously covered government in Erie County and Niagara Falls. Gee graduated from Boston University with degrees in journalism and political science.

@denisejewellgee |

Tiffany Lankes

Tiffany Lankes

Tiffany Lankes joined The Buffalo News in 2013 and primarily covers the Buffalo Public Schools. She has written about education since 2003 at newspapers in Florida and New York. In 2008, she was a nominated finalist for The Pulitzer Prize. Lankes is an Amherst native and graduate of Sacred Heart Academy and Syracuse University. She started her journalism career writing for the News’ NeXt section.

@TiffanyLankes |

Sandra Tan

Sandra Tan

Sandra Tan has been a cityside reporter for The Buffalo News since 2000 and currently covers the Buffalo Public Schools beat. She previously covered the Williamsville school district and was a full-time education reporter for five years prior to joining The News. She graduated from the Columbia Graduate School of Journalism.

@BNschoolzone |

Deidre Williams

Deidre Williams

Deidre Williams began working for The Buffalo News in 1999 and currently covers Buffalo Public Schools. She formerly was a suburban reporter on the Northtowns beat and has been a cityside reporter covering communities since 2004. Williams has a mass communications degree from Towson University.

@DeidreWilliamsB |