Higher Education Opportunity Act - 2008
President Signs Reauthorization Bill
On August 14, 2008, President Bush signed into law the Higher Education Opportunity Act (Public Law 110-315).
House and Senate Conferees Adopt Reauthorization Bill
On July 28, 2008, Congressional members of the Higher Education Act Reauthorization Conference Committee adopted a compromise bill (conference report) that would reauthorize the Higher Education Act of 1965, as amended, by a vote of 22-1 on the House side and 18 to 3 on the Senate side. This bill – the Higher Education Opportunity Act (H.R. 4137) – includes provisions that would:
- Increase the maximum Pell Grant to $8,000 by academic year 2014-2015
- Authorizing year-round Pell Grant
- Extend the time period for measuring a school’s cohort default rate (CDR) from two years to three years
- Provide schools with new ways to meet the 90/10 Rule, and allows proprietary schools to exclude the increased Federal Stafford Unsubsidized loan limits from their 90/10 calculations
- Require additional disclosures from schools
- Require the Secretary of Education to develop, make available, and process a simplified student financial aid application (EZ FAFSA) in both paper and electronic formats
- Implement a Maintenance of Effort provision that would eliminate a state’s College Access Challenge Grant funding if that state did not increase higher education spending each year by at least as much as costs increased (on average, over the previous five years).
The effective date of this bill will be the date of enactment, unless otherwise provided. H.R. 4137 is expected to be voted on by the full House on July 29 or 30, and then move to the full Senate for vote by the end of the week. These votes are expected to be clean with no amendments.
The current HEA extension is set to expire on July 31. In order to allow Congress time to finish up its work on this bill, and for the President’s signature, the Senate introduced a bill (S. 3352) that would extend the HEA until August 15, 2008. The Senate passed this extension bill on July 28, and the House subsequently passed it on July 30, 2008. The President is expected to sign this bill before the current extension expires.
We will be providing a more detailed analysis of this bill after the "final" version is signed into law. Stay tuned!
Law & Regulations
Electronic Code of Federal Regulations
Higher Education Act (most recently published October 2002)
- Titles I, II, and III (General Provisions, Teacher Quality Enhancement and Institutional Aid)
- Title IV, Parts A and B (Student Assistance; Grants, FFELP)
- Title IV, Parts C through H (Student Assistance; Work Study, Direct Loans, Perkins Loans, Need Analysis, General Provisions for Student Assistance, and Program Integrity)
- Titles V, VI and VIII (Developing Institutions, International Education Programs, and Graduate and Postsecondary Improvement Programs)
Letters & PublicationsFederal Student Aid Handbook
Dear Partner/Colleague Letters
Tools for Schools
Satisfactory Academic Progress
FSA Self-Assessment Tools for Schools