The Department of Education planned this month to begin reshaping the role of private debt collection firms in handling student loans by pulling defaulted borrower accounts from a handful of large private contractors.
Lawmakers who control the department’s budget had other ideas.
After a recent Senate spending package warned the department against dropping the debt collectors, the plan is on hold. And it’s not clear how those companies will figure into the Trump administration’s proposed overhaul of student loan servicing.
Private loan servicers handle payments from borrowers on their student loans and provide information on payment plan options. When borrowers go more than 270 days without making a payment on their loans, they are considered to be in default. Those companies are tasked with collecting on more than $84 billion in defaulted student loan debt.
Last week, while the most in the media fixed their eyes on Donald Trump Jr., far-left activists geared up for a different kind of assault on the Trump administration: a full-court press to maintain a series of unlawful Obama-era policies that have stripped young men of their constitutional rights, ruined lives, and fostered politically correct (but factually challenged) hysteria on campuses from coast to coast. At issue is the Obama administration’s April 2011 “Dear Colleague” letter, a document that skipped the legally mandated regulatory rulemaking process to require colleges to adjudicate campus sexual-assault cases under a “preponderance of the evidence” standard without also securing adequate due-process rights for the accused.
Why do such a thing? Because campus activists (and Obama-administration allies) were convinced that colleges were in the middle of a “rape crisis.” Shoddy studies conducted with expansive definitions of sexual assault convinced the Left that an astounding 20 percent of college women are assaulted during their campus years, rendering the university a virtual war zone for women. It’s a rate that contradicts Bureau of Justice statistics showing that women are safer on campus than off, and that the real rate of sexual violence on campus isn’t one in five but closer to 6.1 per 1,000, a number that had been trending downward for 14 years as of 2013, the last year covered in the BJS report.
Mental health services. Civics and arts programs. International education and language studies. Anti-bullying activities. Gifted and talented initiatives. Full-service community schools.
These are some of the K-12 education programs that President Trump is proposing be eliminated in his first full budget, as explained in a story published on The Washington Post’s.
The story, based on documents obtained by The Post, details the $10.6 billion in cuts the administration wants to make in federal education initiatives, and how it wants to reinvest part of the savings into efforts to promote school choice.
President Trump issued a sweeping review of federal education policies on Wednesday in an executive order to pinpoint areas where the government may be overstepping in shaping operations of local school systems.
The order requires Betsy DeVos, Mr. Trump’s education secretary, to review, modify and possibly repeal any regulations and guidelines that are not consistent with federal law.
Mr. Trump described the order as “another critical step to restoring local control,” and one that fulfills one of his campaign promises.
PHILADELPHIA ― Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) said in a scathing statement Thursday that he plans to vote against President Donald Trump’s pick to head the Education Department.
Trump’s nominee, Betsy DeVos, floundered during her confirmation hearing last week as Democrats took turns questioning her ability to lead the department. DeVos, a billionaire from a powerful Republican family in Michigan, has been dedicated to funneling money to “school choice” efforts ― and away from public schools.
“Betsy DeVos would single-handedly decimate our public education system if she were confirmed,” Schumer said. “Her plan to privatize education would deprive students from a good public education, while helping students from wealthy families get another leg up.”