(a) Except as provided in subdivision (b), eligible participants in a program shall be youth between the ages of 17 and 24, inclusive, who are economically disadvantaged, as defined in Section 1503 of Title 29 of the United States Code, and who are in one of the following groups:
(1) Persons who are not attending any school and who have not received a secondary school diploma or its equivalent.
(2) Persons currently enrolled in a traditional or alternative school setting or a GED program and who are in danger of dropping out of school.
(3) Very low income persons whose incomes are at or less than 50 percent of the area median income area, adjusted for family size, as estimated by the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development.
(b) Not more than 25 percent of program participants may be individuals who do not meet the requirements of subdivision (a). These participants shall be persons who have educational needs despite the attainment of a high school diploma.