4-13: Operational Implementation Guidance #1 – Federal Student Aid’s Implementation of Revised 2018–19 Federal Pell Grant Payment and Disbursement Schedules

Posted Date: April 13, 2018

Author:  Federal Student Aid

Subject: Operational Implementation Guidance #1 – Federal Student Aid’s Implementation of Revised 2018–19 Federal Pell Grant Payment and Disbursement Schedules

This Electronic Announcement provides institutions with important preliminary information about the system, web, and software modifications we are making to reflect the revised 2018–19 Federal Pell Grant (Pell Grant) payment and disbursement schedules, including changes we must implement to the Central Processing System (CPS), the Common Origination and Disbursement (COD) System, and the EDExpress for Windows software.

In Dear Colleague Letter GEN-18-04, posted to the Information for Financial Aid Professionals (IFAP) website on April 10, 2018, we provided schools with revised payment and disbursement schedules for determining Pell Grant awards for the 2018–19 Award Year. These schedules replace the schedules that were published on January 31, 2018. The revised schedules must be used for all 2018–19 Pell Grant award calculations, including those for students who may have already been awarded based on the January 31, 2018 schedules.

As noted in the Dear Colleague Letter, the revised maximum Pell Grant award for the 2018–19 Award Year is $6,095, an increase of $175 from the $5,920 maximum Pell Grant award that was originally provided for the 2018–19 Award Year (and which was unchanged from the 2017–18 Award Year). The revised maximum expected family contribution (EFC) eligible for a Pell Grant for the 2018–19 Award Year is 5486 as compared to 5328 in the old schedules.

We have begun the work needed to modify our systems, web and software products, technical documents, training materials, and publications to reflect the revised 2018–19 Pell Grant payment and disbursement schedules. In the sections below, we provide high-level information about the impact to the following systems and software products:

  • Impact on the CPS and Upcoming Reprocessing

  • Impact on the COD System

  • Impact on EDExpress

Impact on the CPS and Upcoming Reprocessing

When we began processing the 2018–19 Free Application for Federal Student Aid(FAFSA®) on October 1, 2017, we used the 2017–18 maximum EFC of 5328 to establish Pell Grant eligibility and reported that eligibility on Student Aid Reports (SARs) and in Institutional Student Information Records (ISIRs). As a result of the maximum EFC increase for 2018–19 in the revised schedules, some applicants (those with EFCs greater than or equal to 5329 and less than or equal to 5486 who would not have been Pell Grant eligible using the old schedules) are now Pell Grant eligible for the 2018–19 Award Year.

In the near future, we will update the CPS to use the revised 2018–19 Pell Grant payment and disbursement schedules (and the revised maximum eligible EFC) to determine Pell Grant eligibility and estimated Pell Grant Scheduled Award amounts for all newly-submitted 2018–19 FAFSA forms, as well as for all newly-submitted corrections to previously-filed FAFSA forms. As part of the CPS system update, we will update FAFSA confirmation page functionality as well as our SAR print operations to display estimated Pell Grant Scheduled Award amounts based on the revised schedules.

After we implement the changes to the CPS, we will need to reprocess records for those students who completed a 2018–19 FAFSA form or who submitted a 2018–19 correction before the CPS changes were implemented and who are now, based upon the revised schedules and maximum EFC, newly eligible for a 2018–19 Pell Grant.

We are working to finalize the schedule for CPS implementation of the revised schedules. Monitor the IFAP website for a forthcoming Electronic Announcement that will provide further information, including specific details about the upcoming SAR/ISIR reprocessing.

Impact on the COD System

During the period March 23-25, 2018, we implemented COD System functionality to support processing for the 2018–19 Award Year. The March 2018 COD System release implemented the 2018–19 Pell Grant payment and disbursement schedules published on January 31, 2018 and did not implement the revised 2018–19 Pell Grant payment and disbursement schedules in Dear Colleague Letter GEN-18-04.

Over this coming weekend, we will implement the revised 2018–19 Pell Grant payment and disbursement schedules in the COD System. After this implementation is complete on April 16, 2018, schools that have already awarded students based on the January 31, 2018 Pell Grant schedules will need to re-evaluate how the revised Pell Grant schedules may impact those awards.

We will provide more detail about the April 16, 2018 COD System implementation of the revised 2018–19 Pell Grant payment and disbursement schedules in a forthcoming Electronic Announcement on the IFAP website.

Important Note: All 2018–19 Pell Grant records sent to the COD System before the upcoming release will be evaluated by the COD System using the old schedules, and will need to be corrected after the upcoming release for the revised schedules. We encourage schools to refrain from submitting Pell Grant records to the COD System until after the revised schedules have been implemented in the COD System.

Impact on EDExpress

EDExpress 2018-2019, Release 1.0, posted to the Federal Student Aid Download (FSAdownload) website on September 25, 2017, does not include the revised 2018–19 Pell Grant payment and disbursement schedules and instead carries over the schedules from the 2017–18 Award Year. Release 2.0, originally scheduled for release in April 2018, will now be available in late May 2018, so that we can update the Packaging and Pell Grant modules to use the revised 2018–19 schedules.

EDExpress Packaging users who want to manually add or adjust Pell Grant awards according to the revised 2018–19 schedules before Release 2.0 is available must use the Pell Grant payment and disbursement schedules in Dear Colleague Letter GEN-18-04. After Release 2.0 is available, EDExpress users who already packaged students using Release 1.0 must repackage those students using Release 2.0 to ensure an accurate Pell Grant award.

Contact Information

If you have questions regarding the updates to the CPS or EDExpress, contact CPS/SAIG Technical Support at 1-800-330-5947 (TDD/TTY 1-800-511-5806) or by email at CPSSAIG@ed.gov.

If you have questions regarding the updates to the COD System, contact the COD School Relations Center at 1-800-848-0978 or by email at CODSupport@ed.gov.

 

Publication Date: 4/13/2018

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