As a performance-based organization (PBO), the Department of Education's Office of Federal Student Aid (FSA) is required by law to, among other things, seek to improve customer satisfaction and provide high quality, cost-effective services. In this white paper, NASFAA takes a critical eye to FSA's operations and — after benchmarking it against other federal PBOs, interviewing former federal officials and employees, and examining complaints from federal partners, Congress, the Government Accountability Office (GAO), and other federal watchdog groups — concludes organizational and structural changes are needed in order to help FSA meet its congressionally mandated objectives as a PBO. In spirit of improvement and partnership, the report outlines several recommendations to strengthen accountability and transparency at FSA. NASFAA has a vested interest in the success of FSA and these recommendations, while put forth by the financial aid community, are designed to improve a results-oriented organization that serves students, stakeholders, and taxpayers.
Publication Date: 5/16/2017