Department of Education

News & Analysis as of

Renovating the Past, Constructing the Future: H.R. 5530

This is the fourth installment in a series examining five bipartisan bills advanced by the House Committee on Education and the Workforce on June 22, 2016 and approved by the full House of Representatives on July 11, 2016....more

Proposed Borrower Defense Rules May Significantly Impact Higher Education Institutions

The US Department of Education (ED) recently released a significant Notice of Proposed Rulemaking which could impact most institutions of higher education. In a nutshell, the proposed regulations are designed to provide...more

Supreme Court Poised to Weigh in on Transgender Rights

In recent years, state and federal courts have consistently ruled in favor of those seeking to define their gender identity. However, the Supreme Court has yet to weigh in — a situation that is about to change as the...more

U.S. Department of Education Outlines Loan Relief Pathway for Certain Students

On March 11, the U.S. Department of Education (DOE) released an advanced proposal of rulemaking that would establish a more "borrower-friendly process" for students seeking loan relief triggered by unscrupulous conduct by...more

U.S. Department of Education Issues Revised Handbook for Campus Safety and Security Reporting

For the first time in five years, the U.S. Department of Education (Department) has updated The Handbook for Campus Safety and Security Reporting, the primary resource for institutions of higher education seeking...more

Safeguard Your Federal Funding – Transgender Students And Title IX Compliance

On May 13, 2016, the U.S. Department of Education and U.S. Department of Justice published a guidance document for elementary and secondary schools that reaffirmed its 2015 opinion letter on how Title IX’s regulations apply...more

Worth Another Look: Amendments to the Public School Code

On July 11, S.B. 1073 (Browne, R-Lehigh) became law without the Governor’s signature. S.B. 1073 is the 2016-2017 General Appropriations (GA) Bill; it reads like a ledger and simply directs funds to different agencies and...more

Recent U.S. Department of Education Dear Colleague Letter Raises the Bar on Standards for Protecting Federal Financial Aid Data

On July 1, 2016 the U.S. Department of Education issued a follow-up Dear Colleague Letter to the Dear Colleague Letter of July 29, 2015. This most recent letter reminds institutions of their legal obligation to protect...more

U.S. Departments of Education and Health and Human Services Release Joint Guidance on Foster Youth

On June 23, 2016, the U.S. Departments of Education (ED) and Health and Human Services (HHS) issued a joint guidance addressing LEA support for children in foster care under the provisions of the newly enacted Every Student...more

Alert: Implications of Potential Denial of ACICS Recognition by ED

On June 23, the National Advisory Committee on Institutional Quality and Integrity (NACIQI) will meet to consider the recommendation of US Department of Education (ED or the Department) staff that the Accrediting Council for...more

Updated Clery Act Handbook Released

The Handbook for Campus Safety and Security Reporting (the “Handbook”), which provides important guidance for institutions as it relates to their compliance with the Clery Act’s safety and security requirements, was recently...more

Alert: ED Issues Sweeping Proposed Rules on Borrower Defense

Almost four months after the marathon negotiated rulemaking ended in March without consensus, the US Department of Education (ED) has released a massive Notice of Proposed Rulemaking describing how it plans to refocus the...more

Legal Update: School Website Accessibility and Digital Communications Requirements

To ensure compliance under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act (Section 504) and Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act (Title II), both of which are enforced by the U.S. Department of Education (ED), Office for...more

Appeals Court Holds that Title IX Requires Schools to Provide Transgender Students Access to Restrooms Congruent with their Gender...

G. G. v. Gloucester County School Board, 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 7026 (4th Cir. Va. Apr. 19, 2016). A three-judge panel of the Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit reverses the lower court’s dismissal of a transgender boy’s...more

Ban Proposed on Mandatory Pre-Dispute Arbitration Agreements by Schools Receiving Title IV Aid for Student Borrowers

The U.S. Department of Education has issued a proposed rule that includes a ban on mandatory pre-dispute arbitration agreements by schools receiving Title IV assistance under the Higher Education Act (HEA) and a new federal...more

News from Second and State

The laws of physics tell us that objects in motion tend to stay in motion, and that rule held true for the Pennsylvania General Assembly this week. Carrying over from the hustle and bustle of last week, we saw plenty of...more

Department of Education Proposes Rules Increasing Student Loan Risk to Schools

On June 13, the Department of Education (DOE) proposed new rules relating to effective discharges of student loans. The proposed rules should be of note and concern to all schools, nonprofit and for-profit alike, because of...more

Alert: Challenges to Gainful Employment Student Completer Lists Due July 28

The US Department of Education has set the deadline for institutions to file corrections to their "student completer lists" as the next major step in ED's effort to publish the first set of rates under the Gainful Employment...more

Alert: ED to Propose New Rules for Online Education

Last week, the Department of Education (ED or the Department) submitted to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) proposed new or amended state authorization regulations. The proposed regulations relate to state...more

How Accessible is Your Website? OCR Prioritizing Equal Access for Educational Institutions’ Websites and Web-Based Applications

There is immense value in maintaining a website for your educational agency. Indeed, websites and web-based applications are intended to provide efficient and accessible information to the public, who rely on the information...more

Office of Civil Rights Releases “Dear Colleague” Letter on Transgender Students

On May 13, 2016, the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Civil Rights (OCR) released a Dear Colleague Letter (DCL) addressing a school’s Title IX obligations regarding transgender students, and explaining how the U.S....more

Transgender Accommodation Issues at the Forefront of Employment and Education

Earlier this month, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) released a new Fact Sheet, announcing its formal position on bathroom access rights for transgender employees. The Fact Sheet provides employers with a...more

Transgender Student Issues – The FEDs Speak, But Is It Really News In Connecticut?

On May 13, 2016, with much fanfare, the United States Department of Justice and the United States Department of Education jointly issued a “Dear Colleague Letter” [“DCL”] in order to provide guidance for school districts with...more

Transgender Employee Bathroom Use

Ah, the bathroom. A place of relief and solitude for many, but for the last six weeks, it has been the focus of controversy. North Carolina now requires that people only use restrooms designated for the gender that appears...more

Department of Justice and Office of Civil Rights Issue Dear Colleague Letter on Transgender Students

On Friday, May 13, 2016, the U.S. Departments of Education and Justice released joint guidance entitled Dear Colleague Letter on Transgender Students (“Guidance”). This guidance is provided pursuant to the Departments’...more

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