Superintendent's Message

Kelly Middleton, Superintendent

Kelly Middleton

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Giving Our Students Hope



Last year Newport graduated 86 students and they earned approximately $1.5 million in scholarship funds.   I am providing important scholarship information to all parents and guardians of Newport Independent students


Through a partnership with Northern Kentucky University, Newport Independent students who receive any Federal Pell Grant money can attend Northern Kentucky University for free upon graduation. This means approximately 92% of our graduates can attend NKU tuition free.


Eligibility is determined by information received in a student aid report after you complete the FAFSA.  What is FAFSA?  This is the process of applying for financial aid for college or a career technical school, such as Gateway. The application becomes available in October each year.  A good rule of thumb is to fill it out as soon as possible to maximize the funding you receive — awards are first come, first served. 


After submitting your application you can expect an award letter from your college detailing how much aid you’ll receive. The letter will also let you know if you qualify for the Pell Grant.


While you are not required to maintain a high grade point average, you must earn the minimum GPA in order to qualify for financial aid. At most institutions, the minimum is a 2.0 or the equivalent of a C grade.


Newport High School houses a college coach whose only function is assisting students prepare for college.  This includes meeting with students individually to review goals, assist in college planning, ACT prep, college trips, college applications, etc.  Our college coach is the school’s primary reference point for questions and support.  This service is made available thru an agreement with NKUs Research Foundation and Kentucky Campus Compact. 


Who can answer questions and help complete forms:



Newport Education Foundation


Beginning in 2017, Newport graduates have the ability to earn additional scholarship dollars just by attending our schools. Upon graduation and after a student has successfully finished their first semester of college, a Newport graduate can receive $100 for each school year they attended at least 100 days in our district. A Newport graduate has the opportunity to earn up to $1,200 to cover routine college expenses above and beyond any other scholarships earned.   These funds are also available for work towards a vocational certificate after graduation.  Students must enroll in college or a post-secondary program within two years of graduating from Newport High School to qualify for this scholarship


These funds are made available from a generous gift left to the Newport Education Foundation by Chester Davis, a graduate of Newport in the early 1930s, donations from our Newport staff, and several other contributors. I encourage any organization to consider donating to the Newport Education Foundation as these funds are above and beyond any other scholarship awards.


Discussions are taking place to provide a second year scholarship in the near future if possible.  This could provide a student up to $2,400 to help pay for miscellaneous expenses.


When do I receive funds for The Newport Scholarship Program?   Upon successful completion of twelve hours the first semester of college, a student will show proof of their second semester schedule to Mr. Tete Turner, Chairman of The Educational Foundation.  We ask that you allow two days for processing of the check after confirmation.


Contact:  Mr. Tete Turner at:

(859) 292-3001



Gateway Partnership


Through a Gateway Partnership Agreement with Newport Independent Schools, Gateway offers dual credit courses to eligible sophomores, juniors, and seniors.  Students can earn up to 36 semester credit hours through Gateway Community College. The district funds the cost of tuition, transportation, and class materials. 




Prior to junior year, MAP scores (60th percentile or above) are used to determine eligibility. Afterwards, students must meet ACT benchmarks in math (19) and reading (20).


Northern Kentucky University offers Two Institutional Need-based Aid Programs:


Strive NKU Promise Program


This is a  need-based grant program available to Newport High School graduates. Students must be full time (12 credit hours), first-time Freshman, Pell Grant eligible, and maintain a 2.5 GPA.


  • Eligible students will receive a last-dollar grant that will cover the difference between the cost of attending NKU (tuition, fees, and books) and the federal, state, institutional, and private grants awarded to the student. 
  • It is renewable for up to eight semesters or four years.  Students must maintain a 2.5 GPA; earn 12 credit hours per fall and spring semesters at NKU and remain Pell Grant eligible to renew.



Northern Difference Grant


The Northern Difference is a grant program targeted toward Kentucky residents who demonstrate financial need.  It is used to fund the difference between the cost of attending NKU - tuition, fees, books, room (equivalent to the cost of Kentucky/Commonwealth Hall housing and board) and the federal, state, institutional and private grants awarded to the student.  It is renewable for up to eight semesters or four years.  Students must maintain a 2.5 GPA; earn 12 credit hours per fall and spring semesters at NKU, complete FAFSA by January 1, and remain Pell Grant eligible to renew.



  • Federal Pell Grant eligible
  • Resident of Kentucky
  • First-time Freshman
  • Enrolled at NKU full-time (earn 12 hours a semester)
  • Submit application for admission by March 1
  • Be accepted by NKU with regular admission status
  • Have completed the FAFSA by January 1
  • Family income falls at or below 150% of the national poverty level  

Kentucky Educational Excellence Scholarship (KEES)


The KEES program provides scholarships to students who earn at least at 2.5 GPA each year of attendance at a certified Kentucky high school.  The better you do in high school, the more you earn toward college.  You may also earn awards for ACT/SAT scores and Advanced Placement (AP) test scores.  Homeschool and GED graduates may earn awards based on their ACT scores.  KEES base award amounts are listed at the following website:


A student can take the ACT 12 times.  The college will accept the best score.


What are the upcoming ACT test dates?  


  • October 27th
  • December 8th
  • February 9th 2019
  • April 13th 2019
  • June 8th 2019
  • July 13th 2019


Where can I take the ACT?


How much money does it cost to take the ACT? Newport students have the opportunity to take the ACT up to 3 times at no cost. Additional test registrations can be found at:


In Summary:


  1. 92% of Newport students can go to college for four years free.  Currently, if you attended Newport all 12 years, you would receive an additional $1,200 to put towards other college expenses.
  2. Contact the high school college coach or counselors with any questions you have.
  3. Make yourself college ready.
  4. Meet all paperwork deadlines.



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