Show-Me FAFSA Challenge
The Show-Me FAFSA Challenge is a NEW statewide FAFSA completion competition among Missouri public high schools. Schools will compete with each other for scholarship prizes to be awarded to one of their students in categories such as highest completion rate and most improved completion rate.
Show-Me FAFSA Challenge Winners
There were ties in several categories that required random drawing. There was a lack of submissions for the “Most Innovative Strategy” award, and no panel of judges was convened.
Highest Overall Completion:
1-500 students: South Holt High (South Holt Co. R-I) 73.7%
501-1200 students: Bayless Senior High (Bayless) 66.3%
1201+ students: Rockwood Summit Sr High (Rockwood R-VI) 57.7%
Most Improved Completion:
1-500 students: Collegiate School of Med/Bio (St. Louis City) +37.1%
501-1200 students: Chillicothe High (Chillicothe R-II) +33.4%
1201+ students: Marquette Sr High (Rockwood R-VI) +44.2%
Greatest Number of Lowest Income Students Filed:
1-500 students: Tied at 100%!
Vashon High (St. Louis City)
Transportation and Law (St. Louis City)
Sumner High (St. Louis City)
Osceola Jr-Sr High (Osceola)
Milan High (Milan C-2)
Hogan Preparatory Academy (Hogan Preparatory Academy)
Greenville High (Greenville R-II)
Frontier School of Excellence (Frontier Schools)
Confluence Preparatory Academy (Confluence Academies)
Cleveland NJROTC Academy (St. Louis City)
Alton High (Alton R-IV) – DRAWING WINNER
501-1200 students: Tied at 100%!
Northeast High (Kansas City 33) – DRAWING WINNER
Normandy High (Normandy Schools Collaborative)
1201+ students: McCluer High (Ferguson-Florissant R-II) 89.3%
Most Innovative Strategy:
1-500 students: Charleston High (Charleston R-I)
501-1200 students: No submissions
1201+ students: No submissions
Nine schools reached or exceeded the 60% filing goal to qualify for the statewide drawing:
South Holt High (South Hold Co. R-I) 73.7%
Collegiate School of Med/Bio (St. Louis City) 72.1%
Santa Fe High (Santa Fe R-X) 69.0%
Bayless Senior High (Bayless) 66.3%
Metro High (St. Louis City) 63.0%
Salisbury High (Salisbury R-IV) 60.6%
Jefferson High (Jefferson C-123) 60.0%
Hume High (Hume R-VIII) 60.0%
Chadwick High (Chadwick R-I) 60.0% - DRAWING WINNER
Click the image below to access the tracker.
Social Media Campaigns
In order to encourage participation in completing the FAFSA, MDHEWD created a toolkit of pre-made social media graphics and captions that high schools can use on their own social media platforms. The posts can help generate excitement, remind students of the common FAFSA mistakes, and to file their FAFSA. Find the social media toolkit at https://thesocialpresskit.com/journeytocollege.
2020-21 Competition Structure
The Show-Me FAFSA Challenge will be active from October 1, when the 2021-2022 FAFSA opens, until April 1 at the state aid deadline. Schools may monitor progress using the Show-Me FAFSA Challenge online tracker throughout the competition period.
- Download the Show-Me FAFSA Challenge Guidelines here.
- Download the Show-Me FAFSA Challenge one-page flier, here.
The 2020-21 Show-Me FAFSA Challenge ended on April 1, 2021. Winners were announced on May 14, 2021. View the announcement here. An introductory webinar was held Friday, Sept. 25. Click here to view a recording.
Every public high school in the state was automatically eligible for participation, and automatically appeared on the Show-Me FAFSA Challenge online tracker. Schools were sorted into three groups by size as follows:
(Number of students)
|Number of Schools in group||Number of students in group*|
|A||0-500||365 schools||66,040 students|
|B||501-1200||79 schools||61,375 students|
|C||1200+||83 schools||135,242 students|
*Estimates based on 2019-2020 academic year school populations
Schools with five or fewer seniors appear on the online tracker, but show no data for security purposes. Schools showing no data may contact FAFSACompletionProject@dhewd.mo.gov for information on obtaining their completion status percentages.
The list of schools in each group was published by MDHEWD at the start of the competition. The list supersedes any school population fluctuations that occur throughout the academic year.
Schools will compete against other schools in their group in the following areas:
1. Highest Completion Overall
The school with the highest FAFSA completion percentage on April, 1, 2021, will win this category. In the event of a tie, a random drawing will be held between tied schools
2. Most Improved Completion
The school with the greatest percentage increase in FAFSA completions from April 1, 2020, to April 1, 2021, will win this category. In the event of a tie, a random drawing will be held between tied schools.
3. Greatest Percentage of Lowest Income Students Filed
The school with the greatest percentage of their total filers who are Pell Grant eligible as of April 1, 2021, will win this category. In the event of a tie, a random drawing will be held between tied schools.
This award requires a submission from each school by April 1, 2021. Submissions include stories, testimonials, videos, photos, and social media screenshots. Winners in this category will be decided by a panel of judges who will review submissions.
Click here for the submission form. Submissions are closed at this time.
Prizes will be awarded for the winner in each category in each group and the winner of the statewide drawing. Each category prize is a scholarship of $750. The drawing prize is a $1,000 scholarship.
Winning schools will designate one of their graduating seniors who will attend a Missouri institution in 2021 as the scholarship recipient. MDHEWD recommends choosing prize recipients by random drawing of eligible seniors, however schools may choose a different selection method if desired. If a different method is used, the selection process must be shared with MDHEWD.
The school will be responsible for sending the recipient’s name, contact information, and institution information to MDHEWD by June 1, 2021. If the school has no seniors that will be attending institutions in Missouri, the prize will be awarded to the second-place school in the category or the drawing will be conducted again.
Scholarship funds will be disbursed by the Show-Me FAFSA Challenge Sponsors directly to the recipient’s Missouri institution.
Thank you to the Show-Me FAFSA Challenge Sponsors!