By Joe Pettibon, Associate Vice President for Academic Services at Texas A&M University and NASFAA-nominated negotiator on the TEACH Grant Negotiated Rulemaking
Despite an extended deadline, negotiators failed to reach consensus on a package of proposed regulatory changes to Title II Teacher Preparation Program reporting, Title IV Financial Aid and TEACH Grants.
After meeting for seven and a half days, negotiators persuaded the Department to extend the negotiated rulemaking process to try to address the remaining issues and discuss items that had not yet been reviewed. However, the resulting three-hour conference call failed to yield any progress. Though the process yielded fruitful discussions and information, the Department will now proceed with developing proposed regulatory language as it chooses.
The proposed regulations would have eliminated TEACH Grant eligibility for institutions that do not have a teacher preparation program. The changes would have also eliminated TEACH Grant eligibility for an institution's teacher preparation program that the institution's state designates as at-risk or low performing. Negotiators expressed concern that such changes would punish needy students for an institution's or a teacher preparation program's performance.
The proposed regulations would have expanded state Title II reporting requirements and stipulated that states categorize teacher preparation programs into at least four different categories: exceptional, effective, at-risk and low-performing. Currently, states only identify at-risk and low performing categories. In addition, the proposed language would have discontinued the current method of treating an institution's teacher preparation programs as a whole, and delineated such programs by subject matter (i.e. math, science, elementary education, etc.).
Ultimately, however, the negotiations failed to reach consensus for three primary reasons:
The Department intends to publish its proposed regulatory changes in the Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM).
Publication Date: 4/18/2012