By Zack Friedman, Forbes, October, 17, 2018
Since the implementation of 2016 borrower defense rules were delayed by Secretary DeVos, there has been an ongoing lawsuit brought forward by 19 state attorneys generals, plus the District of Columbia considering the validity of this delay. Yesterday a federal judge ordered the immediate implementation of the rule. The Trump administration has indicated that it’s not going to seek another postponement of the rules, though it’s not yet clear exactly how the Education Department plans to enforce the rules. Hill, the department spokeswoman, said on Tuesday that the agency will “soon be providing further information regarding the next steps for implementation of the 2016 borrower defense regulation.”
By Nell Gluckman, The Chronicle of Higher Education, October 19, 2018
One week into the trial brought against Harvard University’s admissions process, has unveiled strategies of both sides of the case. The group Students for Fair Admissions, that brought the lawsuit forward, is using data compiled by the university’s Office of Institutional Research to show that Asian-American applicants are penalized in personal ratings given by admissions officials. The university, on the other hand, has argued that the data being presented do not show the entire picture of how the admission office works. The lawyer for Students for Fair Admissions has pointed out that Harvard does not require prospective students to disclose their religious identity, but they do require students to disclose race. Harvard has explained that while they do not generally consider race in their personal rating, they consider it in their overall rating, and that it can be relevant if the applicant has overcome adversity due to race.
By Scott Jaschik, Inside Higher Ed, October 22, 2018
The New York Times revealed on Sunday that the Trump administration has drafted policies for the Education department and other agencies to change civil rights policy definitions to exclude trans individuals. The draft policies would use the following definition: “Sex means a person’s status as male or female based on immutable biological traits identifiable by or before birth … The sex listed on a person’s birth certificate, as originally issued, shall constitute definitive proof of a person’s sex unless rebutted by reliable genetic evidence.” The change in definition would erase federal recognition of trans individuals, and substantially alter the support that administrative agencies could provide to trans students facing discrimination. The proposed definition may be submitted to the Justice Department by the end of the year.
By Robin Shea, Constangy Brooks Smith & Prophete LLP, October 22, 2018
The Trump administration released their fall 2018 regulatory agenda last week, where it is revealed that the proposal deadline for the Fair Labor Standards Act overtime rule has been extended, yet again, to January 2019. The rule is predicted to raise salary threshold exemptions, though not as high as the threshold of $913 a week that was adopted under the Obama administration. Proposed regulations on when entities are “joint employers” for FLSA purposes are expected in December 2018.
**Check for updates in the coming months. Most states return to session in January 2019**
-Primary Sponsor: Rep. Eddie Bernice Johnson (D-TX) (Introduced 10/05/2018)
-Committees: House-Science, Space, and Technology
-Latest Action: 10/05/2018 Read twice and referred to the Committee on Science, Space, and Technology
This legislation works to provide for research to better understand causes and consequences of sexual harassment affecting individuals in the scientific workforce and institutions of higher education, and to examine policies to reduce the prevalence and negative impact of such harassment.
**Want to submit comments of your own? Check out NASPA’s Q&A on submitting public comments**
-A Notice by the Corporation for National and Community Service on 10/17/2018
-Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS)
-Comments currently being accepted at Regulations.gov
Summary: “The Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS) has submitted a public information collection request (ICR) entitled Employers of National Service Enrollment Form and Annual Survey for review and approval in accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995.”
-A Notice by the Education Department on 10/17/2018
-Federal Student Aid, Department of Education
-Comments currently being accepted at Regulations.gov
Summary: “The Department of Education's Federal Student Aid office is issuing a Notice inviting Applications from parties to implement a Pilot of a Payment Vehicle Account Program.”
-A Notice by the Education Department on 10/22/2018
-Federal Student Aid (FSA), Department of Education (ED)
-30 day comment period that ends on 11/21/2018
Summary: “The Department is requesting a revision of the current information collection. These Federal Family Education Loan (FFEL) Program regulations require a loan holder to match its database against the Defense Manpower Data Center (DMDC) and automatically apply the interest rate limitation, as appropriate, to borrowers under the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA). There has been no change in the statute or in the regulations. The Department is revising downward the overall collection burden due to the decreasing number of FFEL loan holders and affected loans. Additionally, the Department is removing the minimal burden previously assessed individuals as a separate form was created subsequent to the initial information collection and the burden on individuals is more appropriate linked to that information collection.”
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