A plan to make it tougher for students to qualify for TOPS assistance to pay for college won't be implemented, just yet.

The Board of Regents discussed several options to make changes to TOPS, but in the end, the panel decided not to make the requirements tougher. The board is sending a plan to lawmakers for consideration during the spring legislative session.

Regents' staff in January recommended increasing the yearly academic credit requirements to 30 hours, up from 24 now, for those who get TOPS awards. Supporters said the change would improve chances for students to graduate in four years.

But several board members say that change needs to be fully studied to determine the impact the change would have on students.


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