Pell Grant Materials

Federal Pell Grants help more than seven and a half million low- and moderate-income Americans attend and complete college and are the cornerstone of our nation's student aid system. The vast majority of Pell recipients have family incomes under $40,000, and they already have to borrow more than others to complete college. For more information about Pell Grants, visit the U.S. Department of Education's website.



Coalition Letters



TICAS Press Releases and Statements


Pell Grants Help Keep College Affordable for Millions of Americans
July 23, 2018 - One-pager on the importance of Pell Grants, the impact of recent changes, and the need to strengthen them.

How to Secure and Strengthen Pell Grants to Increase College Access and Success
October 16, 2018 - One-pager with key recommendations on how to secure and strengthen Pell Grants, the federal government’s most vital investment in higher education.

Pell Grants for Short-Term Programs - The Rationale and the Risks
November 1, 2017 - This two-pager briefly describes short-term programs and what we know about their pay-off for students, and poses critical questions for advocates and policymakers considering the merits of loosening Pell Grants standards for these programs.

Redefining Full-time for Pell Grants Reduces College Access
December 12, 2017 – Currently, students taking 12 credit hours a semester are considered "full-time" and are eligible for the maximum Pell Grant award. While some states have experimented with proposals to encourage students to take 15 credits, rather than 12, such a federal policy change to maximum Pell Grant eligibility could cut millions of students' grants by up to $1,500 a year, reducing college access and their likelihood of completion. 

House FY18 Budget Penalizes Work for Low-Income College Students by Cutting the Income Protection Allowance (IPA)
August 23, 2017 – The House FY18 budget resolution significantly cuts already low IPA levels, reversing the changes enacted on a bipartisan basis in 2007 to help needy working students. This rollback would cut Pell Grants for the millions of recipients who are already working and struggling to cover living expenses and rising college costs. 

House FY18 Budget Increases Uncertainty and Complexity in the Financial Aid Process for Students Living in or Near Poverty
August 3, 2017 - The House Budget Committee’s Fiscal Year 2018 resolution makes students with family incomes above $20,000 ineligible for an automatic-zero EFC, completely reversing bipartisan changes enacted in 2007. This proposal would add uncertainty and complexity to the financial aid process for needy students, ultimately harming college access for nearly one-in-five of the neediest Pell Grant recipients.

An Arbitrary Maximum Income Cap Would Eliminate Pell Grants for Needy Students
July 24, 2017 - The House Budget Committee's Fiscal Year 2018 budget proposes a maximum income cap for Pell Grants, above which students would no longer be eligible for Pell Grants, regardless of their family size or situation. A maximum income cap would cut off Pell Grants from students who, due to family circumstances, require financial assistance to afford college.

No Causal Link Between Federal Student Aid and Higher Tuition
March 24, 2017 - Leading higher education experts and economists have found no convincing, causal relationship between federal student aid (including Pell Grants) and college prices.

Independent Students Depend on Pell Grants for Access to College
November 16, 2012 - Fact sheet on independent students, with a focus on those who receive Pell Grants.

Impact of the Immediate and Retroactive Lower Lifetime Limit for Pell Grants
June 19, 2012 - In the 2012-13 year alone, the immediate and retroactive lower lifetime limit for Pell Grants will cause more than 100,000 students to lose their Pell Grant. This change, enacted by Congress last year, is expected to disproportionately harm African-American students and students enrolled at public and nonprofit four-year colleges, and will make it harder for students needing remediation to complete.

Expanding the Definition of Income Would Penalize Work, Reduce College Completion, and Increase Complexity
June 18, 2012 - The House majority's FY12 Labor-HHS appropriations bill proposed expanding the definition of income for determining eligibility for Pell Grants and other student financial aid. This change would have cut Pell Grants for needy students by an estimated $13 billion over 10 years, harming college access, completion, and economic growth.

House FY12 Appropriations Bill Cuts Pell Grants by $44 Billion
October 11, 2011 - One-pager on the impact of the House Appropriations Committee FY12 Labor‐HHS bill, which would have cut millions of needy students' Pell Grants, including entirely eliminating grants for more than 550,000 students next year and for more than 1 million students in 2017.

Pell Grant Provisions Prevent Student Abuse
July 18, 2011 - Despite recent discussion of student abuse of federal Pell Grants, there is actually no evidence widespread abuse exists. Any concerns about fraud or abuse should be addressed directly and carefully to avoid harming the millions of needy students who play by the rules.


TICAS Comments on IPEDS Technical Review Panel #50: Outcome Measures 2017-18: New Data Collection Considerations
October 12, 2016 – TICAS public comments in response to the “Report and Suggestions from IPEDS Technical Review Panel #50: Report and Suggestions from IPEDS Technical Review Panel #50: Outcome Measures 2017-18: New Data Collection Considerations.”

TICAS Comments on Revisions to IPEDS Pell Graduation Rate Proposal
July 20, 2016 – TICAS public comments on the Department of Education’s modifications to its February proposal to include Pell Grant recipient outcomes in the Integrated Postsecondary Data System (IPEDS), as published in the Federal Register on June 24, 2016.

TICAS Comments on IPEDS Pell Graduation Rate Proposal
April 18, 2016 - TICAS public comments suggesting improvements to the U.S. Department of Education’s proposal to include Pell graduation rates in the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS), as published in the Federal Register on the February 18, 2016.


Coalition Letters

Coalition Letter Urging House and Senate Appropriators to Protect Pell in FY19 Spending Bill
June 25, 2018

Coalition Letter Urging House and Senate Appropriations Committees to Protect Pell Grant Funding and Increase the Maximum Grant
February 22, 2018

Coalition Letter Urging Senate Appropriations Committee to Protect Pell Grant Funding and Increase the Maximum Grant
September 5, 2017

Coalition Letter Urging House and Senate Leadership to Continue Annual Indexation of Pell Grants to Inflation
July 24,  2017

Coalition Letter Urging House Appropriations Committee to Protect Pell Grant Funding
July 18, 2017

Coalition Letter Urging Congress to Protect Federal Student Loan and Grant Programs, and to Strengthen Pell Grants
April 4, 2017

Coalition Letter Urging House and Senate Appropriations Committees to Protect Pell Grant Funding
October 21, 2016

Coalition Letter Urging House and Senate Appropriations Committees to Protect Pell Grant Funding
April 13, 2016

Coalition Letter Urging House and Senate Appropriations Committees to Protect Pell Grant Funding
November 17, 2015

Coalition Letter Urging House and Senate Appropriations Committees to Protect Pell Grant Funding
November 24, 2014

Coalition letter urging the Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction to protect the Pell Grant
September 27, 2011

Coalition letter urging the President to Protect Pell Grants in negotiations over the debt ceiling
July 15, 2011

Coalition letter urging Congress to maintain the maximum $5,550 Pell Grant for FY2011
April 5, 2011 


An Income Cap to Restrict Pell Grant Eligibility Would Punish Students with True Financial Need
October 19, 2017

The House Budget Committee’s Plan to Slash Federal Student Financial Aid: A Tweetable Summary
August 8, 2017

What the House Republican Plan to Cut Pell Grants by $78.5 Billion Means for Students
July 18, 2017

What the House Republican proposal to cut $77 billion in mandatory Pell Grant funding means for students
March 16, 2017

Impact of House Budget Committee’s Proposal to Cut the Maximum Pell Grant and Freeze it for 10 Years (Chart)
March 16, 2016

Students at Shuttered Corinthian Campuses Need Congress to Restore their Pell Grant Eligibility
April 28, 2015

Impact of House and Senate Budget Proposals to Freeze the Maximum Pell Grant for 10 Years: Making College Even Less Affordable (Chart)
March 19, 2015

Why the link between CDRs and Pell Grants is good for students
August 8, 2014

CBO Projects Almost No Annual Growth in Pell Grant Costs (2012-13 to 2023-24)
September 9, 2013


Poll: Young Adults Say Higher Education is More Important but Less Affordable 
November 9, 2011 - Young adults of all backgrounds and across the political spectrum oppose proposals to reduce federal financial aid, either by decreasing access to Pell Grants or charging interest on student loans while borrowers are still in school. Instead, they believe Congress should make college and training more affordable, and that it is a key way to strengthen the economy as well.

TICAS Press Releases and Statements

Mixed News for Pell in Senate FY19 Education Spending Bill
June 28, 2018 

Statement on FY18 Omnibus Budget and Pell Grant Funding
March 21, 2018

Student Loans and Pell Grants in the Crosshairs of Budget Reconciliation
October 5, 2017

Senate Spending Bill Increases Pell Grants by $100, But Also Cuts Pell Funding by $2.6B
September 6, 2017

House FY18 Spending Bill Cuts Pell Grants by $3.3 Billion and Freezes Maximum Pell Grant
July 12, 2017

Bicameral Pell Grant Preservation and Expansion Act Would Help Lower Student Debt for Those Who Need it Most
May 16, 2017

Statement on Bipartisan FY17 Spending Agreement’s Mixed Message for Pell Grants
May 1, 2017

Statement on Trump Administration Proposals to Raid $5.2 Billion from Pell Grants in FY2017 and 2018
March 29. 2017

Statement on President's FY2018 Budget and House Education and Workforce Committee Plan
March 16, 2017

House FY17 Funding Bill Cuts Pell Grants by $1.3 Billion, Blocks Gainful Employment Rule
July 6, 2016

Statement on Bipartisan Senate Agreement to Cut $1.2 Billion from Pell Grant Program while Restoring Year-Round Grants
June 9, 2016

Statement on the Opportunity to Strengthen Pell Grants and the “Dangerous Precedent” in the Senate FY17 Appropriations Bill
June 7, 2016

Statement on New Pell Grant Program Costs from CBO
March 24, 2016

House FY17 Budget Plan Cuts Pell Grants
March 15, 2016

Statement on Administration's Pell Grant Proposal
January 19, 2016

Senate FY16 Funding Bill Blocks Gainful Employment, Cuts Student Aid
June 23, 2015

House FY16 Education Funding Bill Blocks Gainful Employment Rule, Cuts Student Aid
June 16, 2015

Senate and House FY16 Budget Plans Make College Less Affordable
March 19, 2015

House FY16 Budget Plan Reduces Access to College
March 17, 2015

President’s FY16 Budget Prioritizes College Affordability and Reduced Student Debt Burdens
February 3, 2015

House FY15 Budget Proposal Would Increase Student Debt
April 1, 2014

President’s FY15 Budget Fully Funds Pell Grants and Improves Income-Driven Repayment
March 4, 2014

President’s FY14 Budget Good for Current Students; Raises Rates for Future Students
April 10, 2013

Senate Budget Makes College Affordability a Priority; House Budget Slashes Pell Grants and Student Loans
March 19, 2013

House FY14 Budget Proposal Makes College Less Affordable
March 12, 2013

In Reversal, House Appropriations Bill Funds Pell Grants
July 18, 2012

Bipartisan Senate Agreement Preserves Low Student Loan Interest Rate
June 27, 2012

House Budget Proposal Cuts Pell Grants and Student Loans
March 26, 2012

President's FY13 Budget Makes College Affordability a Priority
February 13, 2012

President Obama Proposes Bold Steps to Ensure College Access and Success
January 27, 2012

House FY2012 Spending Bill Eliminates Pell Grants for More than 100,000 Students Next Year
December 15, 2011

Final Bipartisan Debt Deal Provides $17 Billion for Pell Grants
August 1, 2011

Congress Urged to Continue to Invest in Pell Grants in FY2012
April, 14, 2011

House Budget Committee FY 2012 Budget Plan Cuts Pell Grants by 62%
April 8, 2011

Can Students Count on Pell Grants to Help Pay for College?
President's FY12 Budget Says "Yes" while House FY11 Cuts Say "No
February 14, 2011

House Vote Puts Pell Grants in Peril
January 25, 2011