This Week In Washington
This week, the Senate confirmed Robert King to be the Assistant Secretary for Postsecondary Education at the U.S Department of Education (ED). King, the former President of the Kentucky Council on Postsecondary Education and former chancellor of the State University of New York system, will now lead the part of ED that, among other departments, seeks to “broaden access to higher education and strengthen the capacity of colleges and universities.”
ED’s National Center for Education Statistics released findings from its longitudinal study, “Baccalaureate and Beyond: A First Look at the Employment and Educational Experiences of College Graduates, 1 Year Later.” Although focused on undergraduates, the study implicitly highlights that students with parents who have graduate and professional degrees tend to, across several metrics, have the best outcomes. The study notes that those students obtain degrees at the highest rates, complete their degrees the fastest, and borrow the fewest federal loan dollars. Read the full report here.
News You Can Use
Student loan borrowers who default have, on average, less than $10,000 in debt and are more likely to be non-completers, black, low-income, or a graduate of a for-profit college.
The Pew Charitable Trusts reports on the decline in lawyers practicing in rural areas and how this affects rural residents, especially lower-income individuals, who must travel hundreds of miles for legal services.
The Institute for College Access & Success released a brief reviewing existing proposals to streamline income-driven repayment for federal student loan borrowers.
The following bill(s) have been recently introduced for consideration by the 116th Congress (2019-2020):
H.R. 3512 – Preventing Risky Operations from Threatening the Education and Career Trajectories of Students (PROTECT Students) Act of 2019 [Rep. Susie Lee (D-NV-3), et al.] would codify consumer protections in higher education related to the “90/10” rule (which dictates how much revenue for-profit schools can receive from federal sources), the 2014 gainful employment regulation, and the 2016 borrower defense regulation. H.R. 3512 is the House companion bill to S. 867 which was previously introduced by Sen. Margaret Hassan (D-NH).
H.R. 3621 – Student Borrower Credit Improvement Act [Rep. Ayanna Pressley (D-MA-7) and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY-14)] would remove from credit reports adverse information related to certain defaulted or delinquent private education loans for borrowers who demonstrate a history of loan repayment.
H.R. 3662 – Relief for Defrauded Students Act of 2019 [Rep. Lucy McBath (D-GA-6), et al.] would allow students who have been defrauded by educational institutions to seek forgiveness of their federal student loans. This bill would codify into federal law the final Borrower Defense to Repayment rule issued by the Obama Administration.