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SA Weekly: December 16

Civic Engagement Policy and Advocacy Equity, Inclusion and Social Justice Civic Learning and Democratic Engagement Sexual and Relationship Violence Prevention, Education, and Response
December 16, 2019 Maya Ward-Fineman NASPA

Welcome to SA Weekly, your destination for higher ed news, NASPA research and policy, constituent blogs, and more.

Ruling Narrows Title IX Obligations “Federal appeals court ruling sets narrow standard for what institutions are expected to do when students commit sexual misconduct.”

Betsy DeVos Overruled Education Dept. Findings On Defrauded Student Borrowers “The education secretary says many students who were defrauded by for-profit colleges don't deserve full relief from their loans. Department memos show career staff arguing the opposite.”

Trump Signs Order Against Anti-Semitism At Colleges, Worrying Free Speech Advocates “The order will extend a federal anti-discrimination law to include discrimination based on anti-Semitism. Some worry the policy will be used to stifle criticism of Israel on college campuses.”

Federal Loans and ISAs “Trump administration plans to create an experiment where a limited group of colleges could take on students' federal loan debt and have them repay it through income-share agreements.”

Completion Rates Rising, Slowly “The latest report from the National Student Clearinghouse finds completion rates still rising across all sectors in higher education, but with a slowing pace.”

Fewer Students Are Going To College. Here's Why That Matters “College enrollment continues to decline, according to data released Monday. Small colleges have been forced to close; others are getting creative when it comes to finding and keeping students.”

Policy Update 

Letter to House Leaders Supporting the FUTURE Act

American Council on Education and 40 other education organizations, including NASPA, December 10, 2019 

NASPA has signed onto this letter to House leaders urging passage of the Fostering Undergraduate Talent by Unlocking Resources for Education (FUTURE) Act. The bill will work to make permanent critical mandatory funding for Minority-Serving Institutions (MSIs) and simplify the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). 

#SAadvocataes Head to the Hill by Teri Lyn Hinds

Relevant Bills & Updates

HR 5363—Fostering Undergraduate Talent by Unlocking Resources for Education (FUTURE) Act

Primary Sponsor: Rep. Alma Adams (D-NC-12)

Latest Action: Passed the House and then proceeded to pass the Senate by Voice Vote, December 10, 2019

As an update to last week, the amended FUTURE Act has passed both the House and the Senate and is expected to be signed into law by President Trump.  The amendment to the bill will create a data sharing agreement between the Department of Education and the Internal Revenue Service that will simplify the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and streamline income certification for income-driven repayment plans for borrowers. 

HR 5388—To provide that the Secretary of Education may not issue or enforce certain rules that weaken the enforcement of the prohibition of sex discrimination applicable under title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972.

Primary Sponsor: Rep. Elissa Slotkin (D-MI-8)

Latest Action: Introduced on December 10, 2019 and referred to the House Committee on Education and Labor 

This standalone bill would prevent the proposed Title IX rule, published on November 29, 2018 from implementation or replication in future rulemaking. NASPA submitted comments to the proposed rule to the Department of Education Office for Civil Rights following its release in February 2019. Currently, the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA) has meetings scheduled with advocacy groups through February 6, 2020. A final rule is expected to be released by March, 2020. 

Relevant Regulations

Federal Perkins Loan Program, Federal Work-Study Programs, Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant Program, Federal Family Education Loan Program, William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan Program, Teacher Education Assistance for College and Higher Education Grant Program, Federal Pell Grant Program, Leveraging Educational Assistance Partnership Program, and Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness for Undergraduate Programs

Proposed Rule by the Department of Education on December 11, 2019

Public Comment Period Closes on January 10, 2020

Availability of Information to the Public

Rule by the Department of Education on December 12, 2019

Effective Date, December 12, 2019

Regular Rate Under the Fair Labor Standards Act

Rule by the Wage and Hour Division, Department of Labor on December 16, 2019

Effective Date, January 15, 2020

Eligibility Designations and Applications for Waiving Eligibility Requirements; Programs Under Parts A and F of Title III and Programs Under Title V of the Higher Education Act of 1965, as Amended (HEA)

Notice by the Department of Education on December 16, 2019

Applications Available, December 16, 2019

Want to submit comments of your own? Check out NASPA’s Q&A on submitting public comments

Around NASPA

People of NASPA IV West: Becoming, Self-Defining Experiences by Molly Pierson, Region IV-West