Here's a quick look at some of this summer's key reports and developments related to student debt.
New TICAS Report: Making Loans Work: How Community Colleges Support Responsible BorrowingMaking Loans Work takes a closer look at how some forward-thinking community colleges in California are promoting the responsible use of federal student loans - ideas that can be adopted by colleges across the country.
Thanks for Taking Action to Improve IBR!
A few weeks ago, we asked you to weigh in on the proposed
rules to make IBR and related federal student loan repayment plans easier to
use. More than 2,500 of you submitted comments to the Department of
Education - at least 85% of all the comments received!! Thanks for taking
action, and we'll let you know what happens.
New "Shopping Sheet" Can Help Students and Families See True
Cost of College
The U.S. Department of Education recently released a voluntary model "Shopping Sheet," which can make it much easier for students and families to understand and compare how much they would need to save, earn, or borrow to cover all college costs. It reflects many of our longstanding recommendations for user-friendly financial aid offers, such as including the full cost of attendance and distinguishing loans from grants.
We have called on all
schools to adopt the Shopping Sheet so that all students and families can count
on clear and crucial information wherever they apply. We also support the Understanding the True Cost
of College Act of 2012 (S. 3244), introduced earlier this year by Senator Al Franken,
which would require all colleges to use a standard award letter.
Read our statement on the Shopping Sheet
Recent Reports and
Research of Note
Over the past few weeks, several important reports have focused on aspects of student debt issues:
The Senate HELP Committee's final report on for-profit colleges, based on a two-year investigation, reveals that billions of taxpayer dollars are funding an industry rife with misleading sales tactics, unmanageable student debts, low completion rates, and growing evidence of fraud. (Read our statement)
- The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), with the Department of Education, issued a report to Congress on the private student loan market. It sheds much-needed light on lending practices and trends, why private loans are riskier than federal loans, and the urgent need for reforms. (Read our statement)
The National Consumer Law Center's report, The Student Loan Default Trap: Why Borrowers Default and What Can Be Done, looks at risk factors for default and programs for distressed borrowers and makes research and policy recommendations.
New TICAS Staff in DC and CA
We're very pleased to announce three great new additions to
the TICAS staff! Check out their bios:
- Gina Baleria, Communications Director (Oakland, CA)
- Joseph Mais, DC Office Director and Senior Policy Analyst (Washington, DC)
- Jessica Thompson, Senior Policy Analyst (Washington, DC)