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SA Weekly: January 13

Civic Engagement Policy and Advocacy Assessment, Evaluation, and Research Civic Learning and Democratic Engagement
January 13, 2020 Maya Ward-Fineman NASPA

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

Free College With Grants for Basic Needs “Virginia may join the ranks of states that have made community colleges tuition-free this year, but the state is taking a different approach by providing grants for basic needs.”

Sidewalk Politics “Iowa State University policy restricting political messages written in chalk on campus sidewalks is being challenged in court as violating students' free speech rights. Supporters of the policy believe it will protect underrepresented groups from hateful language.”

SNHU Moves Into Pennsylvania “A statewide credit-transfer deal between Pennsylvania community colleges and Southern New Hampshire University could put pressure on the state’s relatively pricey public institutions.”

Liberal Arts Align With Employer Needs “Small college presidents often feel their programs aren't valued by the labor market, but they heard otherwise from a major employer Monday.”

‘Techlash’ Hits College Campuses “Facebook, Google and other major tech firms were every student’s dream workplaces. Until they weren’t.”

A New Path for Evergreen “Evergreen State, long known for experimental education and leftist politics, still has no majors but is providing students with "paths of study" to follow if they choose.”


Policy Update

NASPA Endorses the Restoring Education And Learning (REAL) Act of 2019 January 2020

Letter to Congressional Leaders Regarding Kiddie Tax Scholarship Fix, Extension of Tuition Deduction, and Repeal of Parking Tax and Endowment Tax, American Council on Education and 17 other education organizations, including NASPA, December 9, 2019

Welcome Back, Public Policy Division Blog Post Series! by Dr. Brent Marsh, Director, NASPA Public Policy Division, January 8, 2020


Relevant Bills

Senate Confirms Paul J. Ray—Executive Office of the President January 9, 2020

Paul Ray has been confirmed by the Senate to head the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA). Ray had been serving as acting head since March 2019, and his nomination for the position has received pushback from certain advocacy groups. OIRA is still in the process of holding meetings with groups interested in addressing budgetary implications of the final Title IX rule. Latest Action: Confirmed by the Senate in a vote 50-44.

States Weigh Measures to Stop Transgender Athletes From Competing in Women’s Sports by Jacob Gershman, Wall Street Journal, January 7, 2020 

As states legislatures head back into session, more states are taking up issues regarding the rights of trans and gender non-binary athletes to participate in men’s and women’s sports. The Wall Street Journal counts at least five states have introduced or prefiled measures that limit participation based on biological sex as designated at birth. At this point, most of the bills are focused at grades K-12, and therefore do not directly conflict with National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) guidelines that allow for trans and gender non-binary individuals to participate on girls’ teams upon meeting certain conditions. Certain advocacy groups warn that the legislation could raise constitutional concerns on the grounds of due process and discrimination.  


Relevant Regulations

Eligibility Designations and Applications for Waiving Eligibility Requirements; Programs Under Parts A and F of Title III and Programs Under Title V of the Higher Education Act of 1965, as Amended (HEA) Correction Notice by the Department of Education on January 13, 2020

United States v. National Association for College Admission Counseling; Proposed Final Judgment and Competitive Impact Statement notice by the Antitrust Division on January 10, 2020

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