Today's News

Today's News for Wednesday, September 17, 2014 
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Working Student Act Introduced In Senate

Legislation introduced on Friday by Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), co-sponsored by Sen. Tim Kaine (D-VA), would increase the income protection allowances (IPAs) for students in Federal Methodology (FM). Increasing the IPAs would "protect" more income from the FM calculation of available income. All other things being equal, an increase in the IPA would generally lead to a lower expected family contribution (EFC) and possibly an increase in eligibility for Title IV aid. Looked at another way, an increase in the IPA increases the amount of money students can earn without that income being counted as available income.

House To Vote On Stopgap Funding Measure

Today the House of Representatives will vote on a short-term funding measure to ensure the federal government has funding for the new fiscal year, beginning October 1. The measure, known as a continuing resolution (CR) would extend current fiscal year (FY) 2014 funding through December 11, 2015, guarding against a repeat of last year's government shutdown. In order to comply with sequestration spending caps, the CR includes a very small across-the-board cut of 0.0554 percent. Upon expected passage in the House the bill will go to the Senate for review.

Advocacy Pipeline: NASFAA Members Bring Message to Capitol Hill

NASFAA members Jim White (Gonzaga University), Jim Swanson (Colorado College), and Brian Lemma (Georgetown University) joined NASFAA staff on Capitol Hill yesterday to discuss critical higher education issues facing financial aid offices and students. The group had wide-ranging policy discussions with staffers in the offices of five policymakers in addition to meeting with Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA). Learn more about the Advocacy Pipeline, explore ways you can get involved, and check out our Facebook album for pictures of NASFAA members on Capitol Hill.

NASFAA Seeks Volunteers By September 24 To Serve On Management Benchmarking Task Force

Members of the Management Benchmarking Task Force will be called upon to help identify benchmarks that would be helpful for financial aid directors to use in their management roles, determine how often those benchmarks should be collected, and consider how data should be compiled. The final product will be a report with recommendations to be issued to the NASFAA Board of Directors for feedback by the February 2015 board meeting. Members will serve October 2014 through March 2015 and will be required to attend one meeting in fall/winter in Washington, D.C. Conference calls and emails will round out the extent of the work. Please view the task force charter and complete the volunteer form by Wednesday, September 24 if interested.


9-16: Availability of MyStudentData Download Guide for 2015-2016 FAFSA on the Web

The 2015-2016 FAFSA® MyStudentData Download document, which includes the record layout for the download file that will be available to users of the 2015-2016 version of the FAFSA on the Web site, is now available.


National News

On 'Undermining Pell'

"Hundreds of colleges charge low-income students tuition that is half or more of their household's entire yearly income, according to a report released today by the New America Foundation that seeks to shed light on colleges' aid practices and to prod Congress to change the structure of Pell Grants," Inside Higher Ed reports.

A Higher-Ed Bubble Even Bigger Than Student Loans

"There are growing concerns that the benefits of a college degree are on the decline, while costs continue to rise," CNBC reports.

Education Finance Lobbying Group Names New Head

"One of the main lobbying organizations that represnts loan servicers and other student loan entities has named its new president," Inside Higher Ed reports.

Corinthian Colleges Sued For Predatory Lending

"Corinthian Colleges is being sued by the federal Consumer Financial Protection Bureau for what it calls a predatory lending scheme,'" according to The Associated Press.

State News

All Kindergartners In Nevada Given College Savings Accounts

"In Nevada, starting kindergarten means starting to save money for college," Education Week  reports.

Blogs and Think Tanks

GOP Blocks Warren's Student Loan Bill

"Senate Republicans blocked Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) from bringing up her bill to allow students to refinance their loans," The Hill'Floor Action reports.

Putting Student Debt In Some Much-Needed Perspective

"The rising total of student debt - now over $1 trillion - has been a hot topic in the news over the past several years," The Wall Street Journal's Washington Wire reports.

Chart Of The Week: More Students Are Graduating High School Than Ever Before

"It's a national imperative that every student graduate from high school prepared for college and for a career. And thanks to the dedication of our teachers and educators and the hard work of our students, more young people are graduating and earning their high school diplomas than ever before," according to The White House Blog.

Experts: The White House Plan To Rate Colleges Has Major Issues

"A new rating system backed by the White House aims to evaluate nearly all of the nation's colleges and universities. Roughly 6,000 schools that educate around 22 million students are about to endure an unprecedented amount of federal scrutiny," The Huffington Post reports.

'A National Admissions Office' For Low-Income Strivers

"Arianna Trickey was opening a piece of mail in her bedroom during junior year of high school when a pamphlet fell out of the envelope. The pamphlet seemed to offer the impossible: the prospect of a full scholarship to several of her dream colleges," The New York Times' The Upshot blog reports.

Congress Didn't Pay A Lot To Go To College. Today's Students Shouldn't Either.

"This week, the Senate was expected to (but looks like it no longer will) vote on a bill to allow students to refinance their student loans. ... [B]eyond the merits of refinancing, it's striking how little the system that the Senate is debating resembles the system they encountered when they were college-age," according to the Demos Policyshop blog.




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