Academic journal article Journal of Developmental Education

A Closer Look at Legislation to Promote Student Success and Access to Higher Education

Academic journal article Journal of Developmental Education

A Closer Look at Legislation to Promote Student Success and Access to Higher Education

Article excerpt

H. R. 3221, The Student Aid and Fiscal Responsi- bility Act of 2009 (SAFRA), proposes an histori- cal federal investment in America's community colleges. It supports President Obama's goals to increase college accessibility and affordability and promote the development of a highly-trained workforce prepared to meet global economy needs. The bill's provisions include the restructur- ing of federal student lending programs, whereby all loans will originate through the Direct Loan Program beginning July 1, 2010. The resulting $87 billion in savings would fully fund the bill's other provisions. Part of these savings would be rein- vested in programs that provide grant funding at the state and institutional level to increase at- tainment of postsecondary degrees at community colleges (and public 4-year institutions of higher education that offer 2-year degrees). Monies for improvements to facilities and new construction at community colleges are authorized. Some sec- tions of the bill stipulate that priority consideration for funding be given to those institutions serving low-income, nontraditional, and firstgeneration college students.

As originally drafted, SAFRA also creates new grant programs targeting services to increase postsecondary retention and completion rates, especially for underrepresented students. …

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