- The Biden administration has a plan to improve oversight of institutions of higher education and strengthen consumer protections for student loan borrowers.
- “We are raising the bar on accountability and ensuring that when students invest in higher education, they receive a solid return on that investment and a greater chance at the American dream,” said U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona.
Minister of Education Dr. Miguel Cardona speaks during the National Action Network National Convention in New York on April 12, 2023.
Jeenah Ay | Reuters
The Biden administration on Tuesday announced its final plan to improve oversight of higher education institutions and strengthen consumer protections for student loan borrowers.
“We are raising the bar on accountability and ensuring that when students invest in higher education, they receive a solid return on that investment and a greater chance at the American dream,” said U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona.
Some of the new rules are aimed at protecting borrowers whose schools suddenly close, while other policies will better inform students of their rights and reduce the chances of them not being able to pay off their student loans when they leave school.
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Under regulations that go into effect July 1, 2024, colleges receiving Title IV financial aid will be required to provide “adequate” financial aid counseling to students, including information about the cost of attendance and the variety of types of aid available. They will also need to provide adequate career services.
Families will also begin to see the differences between aid that must be repaid and aid that does not, as well as standardized financial aid award offers that will make college costs clearer.
“It will reduce student loan debt by increasing awareness of real college costs,” said higher education expert Mark Kantrowitz.
Unpaid education debt exceeded in the USA $1.7 trillionIt burdens Americans more than credit card or auto debt. The average loan balance at graduation has tripled since the ’90s, from $10,000 to $30,000.
The Biden administration also plans to stop universities from withholding transcripts from students who are behind on their bills.
“Ending the ability of universities to retain academic transcripts will enable more students to transfer to college and apply for jobs,” Kantrowitz said.
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