"For generations, [historically black] colleges and universities have played a key role in educating young African-Americans ... But facing often steep declines in enrollment, these schools are struggling to survive," The Washington Post reports.
"The U.S. Treasury, which finances more than 90 percent of new student loans, is exploring ways to make repayment more affordable as defaults by almost 7 million Americans and other strapped borrowers restrain economic growth," Bloomberg reports.
The Department of Education (ED) announced Tuesday a new round of “experimental sites” that will test new and innovative practices to help students in achieving academic and career success. Under the Higher Education Act (HEA) of 1965, as amended, the Experimental Sites Initiative (ESI) permits ED to waive specific statutory or regulatory requirements at participating postsecondary institutions. In keeping with the college affordability agenda President Obama rolled out last summer, the experimental site schools will be able to offer aid for competency-based programs where students are able to progress at their own pace and for prior-learning assessments, which may be particularly helpful for nontraditional or adult learners.
"The University of Pennsylvania’s Graduate School of Education (Penn GSE) hosts an annual joint business plan competition with the Milken Family Foundation to identify and reward ed tech startups which challenge the status quo surrounding modern curriculum. In 2013, Raise [with its revolutionary approach to financial aid] was the big winner," Forbes reports.
During a NASFAA-hosted webinar on Wednesday, financial aid administrators shared their experiences with managing default rates at their community colleges and their decisions on whether or not to participate in the federal student loan programs.
"Potentially tens of thousands of students awarded a Pell Grant or other need-based federal aid for the coming school year could find it taken away because of a mistake in filling out the form," the Associated Press reports. "'Students who have questions should definitely look at their financial aid report or check in with their financial aid office if they think there may have been an error,' said Justin Draeger, president of [NASFAA]."
"The U.S. House on Wednesday unanimously passed legislation boosting competency-based education and overwhelmingly approved an overhaul of how the Education Department discloses college data," Inside Higher Ed reports.
"President Obama took steps to overhaul federal job training programs on Tuesday, announcing new executive actions and signing new workforce investment legislation," Inside Higher Ed reports.
"A decline in high school graduates and students applying to more institutions are what one expert sees as the two main reasons more colleges and universities are struggling to meet their admission yield targets," University Business reports.
"Discover Financial Services said its second-quarter profit rose 7%, driven by widespread loan growth and strong credit performance," The Wall Street Journal reports.
"Legislation designed to prevent for-profit colleges from gaming the federal aid system and exploiting veterans died within 15 minutes of being introduced this month," according to the Center for Investigative Reporting.
"Legislation that the U.S. House of Representatives is considering this week would significantly simplify higher education tax breaks for students and their families – but would do so at an exorbitant price," The New America Foundation's EdCentral reports.
Yesterday, the House of Representatives passed two bills related to the reauthorization of the Higher Education Act- HR 4983 Strengthening Transparency in Higher Education Act and HR 3136 Advancing Competency-Based Education Demonstration Project Act of 2013. Originally introduced in June, the bills were marked-up and passed out of committee in the second week of July.
"Intensive advising programs can result in significant savings for low-income students going to college, according to a new research paper, but many high schools lack the sort of resources the paper discusses," Inside Higher Ed reports.
In a period when obtaining a quality higher education is an economic imperative for many, academic institutions should be subject to performance standards to create a minimum quality benchmark in the industry. It has been found certain colleges do a far better job than others, which impacts students considerably, according to a new report released by The Education Trust.