Statement on Bipartisan FY17 Spending Agreement’s Mixed Message for Pell Grants

May 1, 2017
Statement of Lauren Asher

The bipartisan Congressional agreement to fund the government through September sends a mixed message about the importance of college affordability. It both restores year-round access to Pell Grants and cuts the funding available after this year.

Reinstating year-round Pell Grants will help more students afford additional courses so they can graduate more quickly. But today’s deal gives with one hand and takes with the other. The budget agreement raids $1.3 billion from Pell Grant funding despite the urgent need to contain rising student debt and help more people get the education they need to succeed in today’s economy.