August 20, 2021

Higher Ed Policy Roundup: Vol. 5 - Issue 30

Policy and Advocacy


This Week in Washington

On Thursday, the Education Department (ED) announced that it would be automatically cancelling the debt of borrowers who have been deemed by the Social Security Administration (SSA) to be totally and permanently disabled.  Prior to this decision, in addition to being determined by SSA to be totally and permanently disabled, these borrowers were also required to submit an application in order to obtain a discharge. The process resulted in nearly 400,000 eligible borrowers not receiving the benefit they were entitled to.  Moving forward, ED plans to routinely cancel the debt of these borrowers when SSA makes a determination of their disability status.  Read our statement applauding this decision here.

News You Can Use

HBCUs erasing student debt with federal funds brings hope for students and schools.

The U.S. Census released a report on how student debt was a heavy burden on borrowers even before the pandemic. Their findings include how Black Americans who didn't finish college are just as likely to have student debt as a white borrower with an advanced degree.

Recent Legislation

There were no relevant student-aid related bills recently introduced for consideration by the 117th Congress (2021-2022).