Few Surprises in White House Budget

"The White House budget released Monday won't be approved by Congress and likely won't even be seriously considered by lawmakers as a framework for their spending priorities. But the document makes clear that the Trump administration is in many respects on the same page with House Republicans as they seek to dramatically reshape the student aid system in renewing the Higher Education Act," Inside Higher Ed reports.

"President Trump's budget proposes consolidating multiple income-contingent repayment plans for student borrowers into a single plan, eliminating Public Service Loan Forgiveness, and ending subsidized student loans. It also would expand Pell Grant eligibility to short-term nondegree programs, end the Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant and overhaul the Federal Work-Study program.

Although there are some significant differences over details, those are all changes sought by the PROSPER Act, the Higher Education Act reauthorization bill approved by the Republican-led House's education committee in December. The budget document even endorses a risk-sharing measure to put colleges on the hook for student outcomes, another feature of the House HEA plan. (One significant difference in the Trump budget: it seeks, for the second year in a row, to cut the total work-study budget in half.)

Higher ed and student advocate groups have criticized PROSPER as overly partisan legislation that would make college less accessible. They offered much the same take on the White House proposal Monday.

Over all, the proposal would seek to cut the Department of Education's budget by $3.6 billion, or 5 percent, from 2017 levels, although direct student aid spending would be held steady."

NASFAA's "Headlines" section highlights media coverage of financial aid to help members stay up to date with the latest news. Inclusion in Today's News does not imply endorsement of the material or guarantee the accuracy of information presented.


Publication Date: 2/14/2018

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