DC Shuttle …
Trump Begins Work to Boost Apprenticeships. President Trump announced new administrative actions as well as legislative proposals aimed at boosting apprenticeship programs and other worker training, The Wall Street Journal reports. In a speech at a community college in Wisconsin, Trump unveiled a White House push on apprenticeship programs and workforce development issues. He said it was a “framework to put industry in the driver’s seat” as they set up apprenticeship programs in partnership with community colleges and technical schools. The executive order would shift certification of federally funded apprenticeship programs from the Labor Department to grant recipients. The shift will reduce government oversight of the programs. The White House also hinted it may propose changes to college accreditation to allow federal student aid to flow to more vocationally focused training programs. Senators Maria Cantwell (D-WA) and Susan Collins (R-ME) introduced a bill that would create a $5,000 tax credit for up to three years for companies that hire and pay employees enrolled in a registered apprentice program. Politico has more.
Ed Dept to Rewrite Borrowers’ Defense and Gainful Employment Rules. U.S. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos signaled her intent to review and rewrite Borrower’s Defense to Repayment and Gainful Employment rules implemented under the Obama administration. She said she wanted to write new rules that “protect students from predatory practices, while also providing clear, fair and balanced rules for colleges and universities to follow.” The Trump administration delayed implementation of the earlier regulations, which were slated to take effect on July 1. Democratic Senators Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), Patty Murray (D-WA), Sherrod Brown (D-OH) and Dick Durbin (D-OH) sent a letter to DeVos urging her to fully implement the Borrower Defense to Repayment package of regulations. The Obama rules ease the process for loan forgiveness for borrowers defrauded by their college and give the Education Department new powers to take action against troubled colleges. The Democrats write in the letter that delay would be “a monumental dereliction of the duty you have to protect students and taxpayers.” The senators further argue that delaying the rules would “violate the Administrative Procedures Act and the Higher Education Act.” In addition, AGs—from Massachusetts, California, Illinois, Iowa, Maryland, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania and the District of Columbia—filed a motion seeking to intervene in a lawsuit to block the delay effort. Read more in Inside Higher Ed.
Trump Meets with School Choice Advocates. DeVos and other White House officials met with several groups that support school choice. Trump’s budget proposal would invest $1.4 billion in public school choice, charter schools and private-school vouchers, but the Trump administration has yet to unveil a plan to completely fulfill its $20 billion campaign pledge to expand school choice. Meanwhile, the New York Times published a piece on DeVos’s views on education and her own education.
Administration to Keep College Scorecard. Reports indicate that the Education Department will keep the “College Scorecard,” but begin to make changes to it, Inside Higher Ed reports.
We publish the DC Shuttle each week featuring higher ed news from Washington collected by the New England Council, of which NEBHE is a member. This edition is drawn from the Higher Education Update in the Council’s Weekly Washington Report of June 19, 2017. For more information, please visit: www.newenglandcouncil.com.