More low-income students are going to college, but federal aid not keeping up with costs

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AleksandarGeorgiev | E+ | Getty Images The cost of higher education has been rising for decades, but the federal government's Pell Grants program has not kept up with the cost of college tuition.  Federal Pell Grants are the largest source of government-funded grants. The Department of Education anticipates giving 6.8 million students grants for the 2020-21 school year. The grants are awarded to undergraduate students displaying exceptional financial need, and are awarded solely based on financial need (grades and extracurricular activities are not factored in). Those most in need can qualify for the maximum allowable amount of $6,345.  For Americans living in the lowest income brackets, higher education offers a way up the socioeconomic ladder. While the Pell Grant has eased the burden for many, the federal financial aid program is having more...