SA Weekly: July 29

Welcome to SA Weekly, your destination for higher ed news, NASPA research and policy, constituent blogs, and more.

More Than a Fight for the Heavens “U of Hawaii is in conflict with itself as it pursues the controversial Thirty Meter Telescope on Mauna Kea while also being a leading indigenous institution.”

Warren Draws Contrast on Debt Relief Plans “Democratic presidential contender Elizabeth Warren unveils details of a debt cancellation bill, making the case for a more targeted approach than legislation offered by rival Bernie Sanders.”

DePaul Basketball Coach Suspended by NCAA “Association dings head coach for not closely monitoring his program, signaling a desire to hold leaders more responsible for misbehavior by their assistants.”

Suit Seeks to Protect Students Accused of Sexual Assault “A lawyer is seeking class-action status for a lawsuit on behalf of college students who want the right to question their accusers.”

Textbook Spending Continues Slow Decline “Survey finds the amount students spend on course materials each year has decreased, possibly indicating students are increasingly utilizing open-source material and other educational resources.”

Responsibility to Low-Income Workers “Survey finds that more than 20 percent of workers who are members of minority groups are looking to the federal government to prepare them for a changing economy.”

Sound Finances in College and Adulting “College students who make sound financial decisions tend to more quickly develop an adult identity, have fewer mental health problems and better transition to the work force.”

Policy Update

Driven by careful deliberation with senior-level staff and the consultation of NASPA membership, NASPA sign-on statements and letters of support work to advance the vision of the NASPA Strategic Plan in fulfilling the promise of higher education.

NASPA supports the Basic Assistance for Students In College (BASIC) Act

Today’s Students Coalition  launches with NASPA as a member of the steering committee

Federal Updates

H.R. 3877- Bipartisan Budget Act of 2019

  • Introduced on July 23, 2019
  • Primary Sponsor, Rep. John Yarmuth
  • Passed the House on July 25, 2019, slated to pass the Senate this week

The budget deal that passed out of the House last week offers $24.5 billion more in nondefense, discretionary spending, significantly increasing the education budget. The bill includes a provision that will disallow congressional leaders from attaching additional policy riders to the measure to better ensure its passage through the Senate.

Regulatory Updates

Revision of Categorical Eligibility in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)

  • Proposed Rule by the Food and Nutrition Service on July 24, 2019
  • Comment period that ends on September 23, 2019

Representative Bobby Scott has expressed concern regarding the potential impact this proposed regulation will have on eligibility for school lunches for K-12 students.

Secretary's Proposed Priority for Discretionary Grant Programs

  • Proposed Rule by the Education Department on July 29, 2019
  • Comment period that ends on August 28, 2019

Politico’s Morning Education reports that while added to the 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, little is known regarding the success of Opportunity Zones given the lack of available data and corresponding required program success measurements.

Institutional Eligibility and Student Assistance General Provisions

  • A Rule by the Education Department on July 29, 2019
  • Office of Postsecondary Education, Department of Education

Politico’s Morning Education reports that once implemented today, the federal standards will save up to 80,000 students in from losing access to federal aid.

Want to submit comments of your own? Check out NASPA’s Q&A on submitting public comments

Around NASPA

The Connection Between Social and Environmental Justice by Kate Sheridan, Sustainability Knowledge Community