Rivera said his decision will help reduce application fees students must pay to submit their paperwork to colleges and universities.
Kelly Herrero, the high school’s IB Middle Years Program coordinator, said the average application fee at public colleges typically falls between $70 and $90.
Herrero's son, Brock, is a senior at Marietta High School who will use the superintendent's donation to apply to the University of North Carolina. Brock hopes to become a lawyer, she said.
Out of a graduating senior class of about 500, Rivera said he expects 150 to 200 students to apply to college, but that number could go higher.
Rivera said any leftover money will be used to fund bus trips to take students on college tours around Georgia.
The superintendent said he hopes his actions will convince students that applying early to college will give them a better chance of getting accepted into college and taking advantage of any financial aid packages.
“My hope is that it’s an incentive for kids to do the right thing,” he added.
Herrero also said applying early will give students breathing room to apply for scholarships and to enjoy their senior year.
She said Rivera’s commitment shows where his priorities are in his leadership of the school system.
“Any opportunity for these kids to have someone invest in them in this way goes to the theme to what Marietta, I think, is all about,” she said.