By Teri Lyn Hinds, March 12, 2018
While many NASPA members were wrapping up the 2018 NASPA Annual Meeting, Teri Lyn Hinds, NASPA Director of Policy Research & Advocacy, joined Sue Riseling, Executive Director of the International Association of College Law Enforcement Officers (IACLEA), David Bousquet, President of the IACLEA Board of Directors, and Jeff Allison, Director of Government and External Relations at IACLEA, at a briefing for Congressional staff on issues of campus public safety as part of IACLEA’s Capitol Hill Day 2018. Unfortunately, Alison Kiss, Executive Director of the Clery Center was also scheduled to speak, but was unable to attend due to the weather. Ms. Hinds' prepared remarks are provided here.
By Brent D. Griffiths, March 5, 2018
Last Monday a Maryland federal court judge reached a decision counter to that of two federal court decisions out of California and New York respectively, which found President Trump’s decision to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program unconstitutional. Judge Roger Titus stated, "This Court does not like the outcome of this case, but is constrained by its constitutionally limited role to the result that it has reached. Hopefully, the Congress and the President will finally get their job done." The Department of Justice praised the decision. "Today’s decision also highlights a serious problem with the disturbing growth in the use of nationwide injunctions, which causes the Maryland court’s correct judgment in favor of the government to be undermined by the overbroad injunctions that have been entered by courts in other states," Justice Department spokesman Devin O'Malley said in a statement.
By Sierra Darville, March 8, 2018
The America’s College Promise Act, has been reintroduced this month in the Senate. The legislation works to ensure college affordability and is supported by the Association of Community College Trustees, American Association of Community Colleges, Center for Law and Social Policy, and Young Invincibles. Diverse Issues in Higher Education lists that the legislation would:
By Matthew Chingos, March 8, 2018
Streamlining federal grant programs into a single program is being considered as a part of efforts to reauthorize the Higher Education Act (HEA). Brookings Institute Matthew Chingos finds that through repurposing funds, Congress can easily benefit the neediest of students, while colleges previously receiving an influx of grant dollars would likely see a decrease in funding. Pell grants are provided directly to students, while Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (SEOG) funds are issued to institutions. SEOG tends to reward campuses based on prior participation in the program, high pricing, and unmet student need. Eliminating SEOG and increasing Pell would actually only slightly increase individual benefits, due to the small size of SEOG in comparison of the number of low-income undergraduates. Institutions, on the other hand, would lose millions. Another option is for SEOG to be recast as an emergency aid program that colleges could use to support students with immediate, unexpected expenses.
By Jeremy Bauer-Wolf, March 12, 2018
A new report released by Gallup and the Knight Foundation finds that students tend to value a diverse and inclusive environment more than free speech rights. 53 percent of students interviewed picked diversity when asked to select between diversity and free speech. White students value free speech more, where 52 percent picked free speech compared to 31 percent of black students. A similar survey conducted in 2016 found similar results, although students continue to skew more in favor of protecting diversity over free speech. Other research on students’ beliefs regarding free speech has found that while students support the First Amendment in theory, they do not always follow it in practice.
Since the start of the 2018 State Legislative Session, the Policy and Advocacy Team at NASPA has seen movement on 19 bills across 10 states. NJ S 705, received in the Assembly and referred to the Assembly Human Services Committee on 03/05/2018, would create a Transgender Equality Task Force to assess legal and societal barriers to equality and provide recommendations to legislature. HI HB 2139, referred to the Committee on Education and the Judiciary on 03/06/2018, prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex, including gender identity expression in any state education program or activity. TN HB 2620, placed on the Civil Justice Subcommittee calendar for 03/14/2018 on 03/07/2018, expands the attorney general and reporter’s duties to include representation for a Local Education Agency (LEA) or certain LEA employees in a legal proceeding arising out of the LEA’s adoption of a policy or practice designating multi-person restrooms, locker rooms, or other facilities for use based only on one’s biological sex.
In-State Tuition for Undocumented Immigrants
Since the start of the 2018 State Legislative Session, NASPA’s Policy and Advocacy Team has seen movement on 19 bills across 11 states regarding in-state tuition for undocumented immigrants. NJ A 3467, introduced and referred to the Assembly Higher Education Committee on 03/05/2018, allows certain students, including undocumented immigrants who meet certain criteria to qualify for State student financial aid programs. TN HB 2429, placed on the Education Administration and Planning Subcommittee for 03/13/2018 on 03/07/2018, exempts certain undocumented students from paying out-of-state tuition at state institutions of higher education.
Guns on Campus:
Since the start of January, the Policy and Advocacy Team at NASPA has seen movement on 20 bills across 13 states. SC S 1102, introduced and read for a first time on 03/07/2018, would allow instructors of military science authorization to carry a firearm on the school campus to which they are employed. FL SPB 7026, enacted into law on 03/09/2018, requires district school boards to formulate procedures for active shooter situations and to establish or assign safe-school officers at each district school facility within the district. FL HB 621, which was withdrawn from consideration on 03/10/2018, would provide exception to the prohibition on possessing firearms on school property for authorized concealed weapon and firearm licensees.
Primary Sponsor: Rep. John Conyers Jr. (D-MI) (Introduced 03/10/2017)
Latest Action: Ms. Jackson Lee asked under unanimous consent to assume first sponsorship of the bill, which was agreed to without objection on 03/08/2018
The End Racial Profiling Act of 2017 works to address the practice of discriminatory treatment by law enforcement against groups of a certain race or demographic. The legislation defines the practice of racial and religious profiling, creates a federal prohibition against profiling, requires the collection of data to fully assess the problem, and provides funding for the training of law enforcement officers.
-A Notice by the Education Department on 03/07/2018
-Comment period ends on 04/06/2018
-Federal Student Aid (FSA), U.S. Department of Education (ED)
Summary: “Federal Student Aid (FSA) is requesting an additional 30 day public comment period, for this Experimental Sites Initiatives (ESI) information clearance request, to ensure that all affected parties will have an opportunity to review and respond to these proposed additional questions. Based on public comments received during the 30 day public comment period, which closed January 18, 2018, FSA is incorporating 40 new questions across the Institutional Surveys for seven of the experiments. The collection of this data and the results of these experiments will help the Department in its continuing efforts to improve Title IV program administration.”
-A Notice by the Education Department on 03/08/2018
-Comment period ends on 05/07/2018
-Federal Student Aid (FSA), U.S. Department of Education
Summary: “The Federal Pell Grant program is a student financial assistance program authorized under the Higher Education Act of 1965, as amended. The program provides grant assistance to an eligible student attending an institution of higher education. The institution determines the student's award and disburses program funds on behalf of the Department of Education (ED).
Institutions are required to report student Pell Grant payment information to ED electronically. Electronic reporting is conducted through the Common Origination and Disbursement (COD) system. The COD system is used by institutions to request, report and reconcile grant funds received from the Pell Grant program.”
-A Notice by the Education Department on 03/12/2018
-Office of the Secretary, U.S. Department of Education
Summary: “Recently, several States have enacted regulatory regimes that impose new regulatory requirements on servicers of loans under the William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan Program (Direct Loan Program). States also impose disclosure requirements on loan servicers with respect to loans made under title IV of the Higher Education Act of 1965, as amended (HEA). Finally, State regulations impact Federal Family Education Loan (FFEL) Program servicing. The Department believes such regulation is preempted by Federal law. The Department issues this notice to clarify further the Federal interests in this area.”
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