To: AASCU Government Relations Staff
From: Ed Elmendorf, Sr. Vice President for Government Relations and Policy Analysis
Robert Moran, Director of Federal Relations and Policy Analysis
Blakely Whilden, Assistant Director of Federal Relations and Policy Analysis
Re: Weekly Update: Week of May 30, 2011: Senate sign-on letters, Gainful Employment Rule, FY2012 Appropriations
Date: June 3, 2011
Teacher Quality Partnership Grant Funding in FY2012
Senator Jack Reed (D-RI) is circulating the attached letter requesting $43 million for the Teacher Quality Partnership grant program (TQP) in FY 2012. TQP funds partnerships between K-12 school districts and institutions of higher education focused on clinically-based teacher preparation models. Forty grants have been awarded since the program was announced in 2009. Twelve of the grants were awarded with Recovery Act funds and received the full five-year funding in one year. In FY2012, $43 million is needed to continue funding for the other 28 grants in year three of their funding cycle. Sixteen of these grants were awarded to AASCU schools. Please urge your Senator to sign on to this letter. The deadline is Friday, June 10.
Pell Grant Funding Letter for FY2012
Senator Barbara Boxer’s (CA) office is still seeking signatures on a letter (also attached) in support of the Pell Grant Program. The deadline for signing the letter is June 7. Current co-signers on the letter include: Senators Schumer, Gillibrand, Leahy, Casey, Stabenow, Tom Udall, Sanders, Franken, Kerry, Bingaman, Levin, Wyden, and Rockefeller. Thank you to those who have reached out to these offices, others are encouraged to urge their Senators to sign this letter as well.
Gainful Employment Rule
On June 2nd, the Department of Education issued a final rule containing the metrics to be used in determining whether a ‘gainful employment’ program would remain Title IV eligible. A ‘gainful employment’ program is a certificate or credentialed non-degree program of at least one academic year offered by a public or non-profit institution of higher education. The rule establishes three criteria for a gainful employment program for federal financial aid purposes. First, the repayment rate of the program as determined by students who hold loans that previously completed the program must be above a 35% repayment rate. Second, the average debt load for those who have completed the program cannot exceed more than 12% of the average income of that same population. Third, the average debt load for completers cannot exceed more than 30% of that population’s average discretionary income. The rule will not go into effect until July 1, 2015; however, the rule determines a program loses eligibility, if for three out of four years the program is in violation of all three criteria. As such, when the rule goes into effect, it will look back to the academic year 2011-2012. Further detailed information will be forthcoming from AASCU.
The following FY2102 appropriations bills have passed the House:
· Homeland Security (June 2, 2011)
· Military Construction and Veterans Affairs (June 2, 2011)
The following FY2012 appropriations bills have passed through their respective House subcommittee and are ready for consideration by the full committee. Following full committee approval, these bills are expected to go to the House floor:
· Energy and Water (June 2, 2011)
· Legislative Branch (June 2, 2011)
· Defense (June 1, 2011)
· Agriculture (May 31, 2011)
The Senate appropriations subcommittees have held hearings but have not held any markups. You can track the status of the FY2012 appropriations bills in the House and Senate here
, though please note that the updates are a few days behind.