Daily schools update: When student loan debt forgiveness application launches - AZEdNews
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Daily schools update: When student loan debt forgiveness application launches

Students Graduate From Arizona State University. Photo Courtesy Arizona State University

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Updated Aug. 29, 2022: The U.S. Department of Education says an application for federal student loan debt forgiveness will launch in early October, people are encouraged to fill out the application before Nov. 15 to receive relief before the final pause in student loan payments ends on Dec. 31, 2022, and once the form is completed borrowers can expect relief within 4 to 6 weeks.

Borrowers are encouraged to sign up at StudentAid.Gov/DebtRelief to be notified when the application is available.

See what types of student loans qualify for the student loan debt forgiveness plan.

Read President Joe Biden’s speech make when announcing the Student Loan Debt Relief plan on Aug. 24, 2022.

Also, the U.S. Dept. of Education encourages people to check to see if student loan payments that previously did not qualify for the Public Service Loan Forgiveness porgram now do and to take action by October 31, 2022 at StudentAid.gov/PSLFWaiver.

The U.S. Dept. of Education encourages people to follow them and FAFSA on Twitter to keep up with the latest on the student loan debt forgiveness plan and more.

Updated Aug. 24, 2022: U.S. President Joe Biden announced today a plan that would forgive up to $10,000 in student loan debt for individuals who make less than $125,000 and families who earn less than $250,000.

Also, President Biden said student loan payments would be paused one final time through Dec. 31, 2022.

“In addition, we’re fixing the student loan system itself,” President Biden said during a press conference with U.S. Secretary of Education Dr. Miguel Cardona standing beside him.

Many economists and higher education experts are against the plan, saying that it does nothing to stop the rising costs of college, according to a National Public Radio article.

Those who have not supported student loan debt forgiveness, expressed their displeasure with the plan.

“This is a slap in the face to those who never went to college, as well as borrowers who upheld their responsibility to taxpayers and paid back their loans,” said Rep. Virginia Foxx of North Carolina, the top Republican on the House Education Committee, in a Tuesday night statement.

President Biden’s remarks start at the 23 minute mark in the video below.

The White House video: U.S. President Joe Biden Delivers Remarks on Student Loan Debt Forgiveness Plan

“The cost of education beyond high school has gone up significantly,” President Biden said. “The total cost to attend a public four-year university has tripled in 40 years.”

“Instead of properly funding public colleges, many states have cut back,” President Biden said, which has left students with picking up more of the bill for their college educations.

“I know what I’m announcing is not going to make everyone happy,” President Biden said.

“These actions build on my administration’s effort to make college more affordable in the first place,” President Biden said.

Today’s announcement is about opportunity and giving people a fair shot, President Biden said.

How to qualify for the student loan debt forgiveness plan

In order to benefit from this plan, most federal student loan borrowers will have to submit an application to verify their income.

The application to verify income and cancel student loan debt will be available no later than when the pause on federal student loan repayments terminates at the end of the year, the U.S. Dept. of Education says.

The U.S. Department of Education said the nearly 8 million borrowers who already have their income information on file should qualify to have their debts canceled automatically. To address the financial harms of the pandemic by smoothing the transition back to repayment and helping borrowers at highest risk of delinquencies or default once payments resume, the U.S. Department of Education will provide targeted student debt cancellation to borrowers with loans held by the Department of Education.

The U.S. Dept. of Education will announce more details on how borrowers can claim relief under this plan in the weeks ahead.

How the plan could be implemented

The U.S. Dept. of Education is also making available a legal memorandum regarding its authority for these discharges.

The memo from Lisa Brown with the Office of General Counsel to Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona says The HEROES Act, enacted after the September 11 atttacks provides the U.S. Secretary of Education with broad authority to grant relief from student loan requirements during specific periods (a war, other military operation, or national emergency, such as the present COVID-19 pandemic) and for specific purposes (including to address the financial harms of such a war, other military operation, or emergency).

“In present circumstances, this authority could be used to effectuate a program of categorical debt cancellation directed at addressing the financial harms caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. The Secretary could waive or modify statutory and regulatory provisions to effectuate a certain
amount of cancellation for borrowers who have been financially harmed because of the COVID19 pandemic. The Secretary’s determinations regarding the amount of relief, and the categories of borrowers for whom relief is necessary, should be informed by evidence regarding the
financial harms that borrowers have experienced, or will likely experience, because of the COVID-19 pandemic. But the Secretary’s authority can be exercised categorically to address the situation at hand; it does not need to be exercised “on a case-by-case basis.” Id. § 1098bb(b)(3). That is, he is not required to determine or show that any individual borrower is entitled to a specific amount of relief, and he instead may provide relief on a categorical basis as necessary to address the financial harms of the pandemic,” the memo reads.

Other key components of the plan

In addition, the U.S. Department of Education is also proposing a rule to create a new income-driven repayment plan that will substantially reduce future monthly payments for lower- and middle-income borrowers. The proposed rule would protect more income from loan payments. It would cut in half — from 10% to 5% of discretionary income — he amount that borrowers have to pay each month on their undergraduate loans, while borrowers with both undergraduate and graduate loans will pay a weighted average rate.

Proposed changes to the Public Service Loan Forgiveness program

Also, the U.S. Dept. of Education is proposing long-term changes to the Public Service Loan Forgiveness program that will make it easier for borrowers working in public service to gain loan forgiveness by allowing more payments to qualify for PSLF including partial, lump sum, and late payments, and allowing certain kinds of deferments and forbearances – such as those for Peace Corps and AmeriCorps service, National Guard duty, and military service – to count toward Public Service Loan Forgiveness. These proposed changes build on the progress made with the temporary changes announced last year by the Department that expire on October 31, 2022.

To apply for forgiveness or payments to count toward forgiveness under the temporary changes, visit the PSLF Public Service Loan Forgiveness Help Tool.

Plan’s impact on Pell Grant recipients

Pell Grants recipients could have an additional $10,000 in federal student loan debt cancelled, about 60% of current federal student loan borrowers also received Pell Grants, National Public Radio reports.

“For 50 years, Pell Grants have been a key way for the federal government to help lower income families, particularly those earning less than $60,000 a year to send their kids to college,” President Biden said.

“Those Pell Grants used to cover 80% of the cost of going to a public four-year college. Today, Pell Grants cover roughly 32%, that’s 1/3 of the cost as opposed to before,” President Biden said. “It matters.”

“If his plan survives legal challenges that are almost certain to come, it could offer a windfall to a swath of the nation in the run-up to this fall’s midterm elections,” The Associated Press reports in it’s story on this.

About 43 million people with federal student loan debt would benefit from the plan, and 20 million people would have their debt completely canceled, according to a senior administration official.

Student debt makes up the largest amount of household debt after home mortgages, WalletHub reports. As of the first quarter of 2022, outstanding college-loan balances were nearly $1.61 trillion, according to the U.S. Department of Education. 

See their analysis of student debt by state and the unemployment rate for people 25- to 24 years old here.

For example, Arizona ranks 41st in the nation in student debt by state, and 39th in student loan indebtedness and 29th in grant and student work opportunities.

In other education news …

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In Maricopa County there are 1,406,462 confirmed cases of COVID-19, 285,087 Pima County145,126 Pinal County66,857 in Yuma County63,221 in Mohave County, 53,939 in Yavapai County48,900 in Coconino County43,238 in Navajo County35,375 in Cochise County30,185 in Apache County19,363 in Gila County18,163 in Santa Cruz County13,164 in Graham County5,695 in La Paz County and 2,433 in Greenlee County.

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In Maricopa County there are 1,399,709 confirmed cases of COVID-19, 283,188 Pima County144,191 Pinal County66,610 in Yuma County62,861 in Mohave County, 53,610 in Yavapai County48,679 in Coconino County42,901 in Navajo County35,115 in Cochise County29,781 in Apache County19,191 in Gila County18,036 in Santa Cruz County13,005 in Graham County5,669 in La Paz County and 2,418 in Greenlee County.

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Aug. 3, 2022

Schools across Arizona welcomed students back to the classroom today to start the new school year.

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Aug. 1, 2022

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In Maricopa County there are 1,383,292 confirmed cases of COVID-19, 279,033 Pima County142,228 Pinal County65,768 in Yuma County61,998 Mohave County, 52,857 in Yavapai County48,160 in Coconino County42,174 in Navajo County34,557 in Cochise County29,107 in Apache County18,603 in Gila County17,720 in Santa Cruz County12,672 in Graham County5,586 in La Paz County and 2,374 in Greenlee County.

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Earlier coverage


July 1 – July 31: Daily schools update: How to save money on back-to-school shopping

June 1 – June 30Schools update: ASU professor shares how supply chain issues impact Independence Day fireworks shows

May 3 – May 31: Schools update: How to discuss traumatic events with kids

April 4 – April 30: Daily schools update: Chinle principal wins Milken Educator Award

March 1- March 30: Daily schools update: An event-filled weekend of school arts festivals and a CTE competition

Feb.2, 2022 – Feb. 28:  Daily schools update: College in Ukraine powered by ASU would have welcomed students next month

Jan. 13, 2022 – Feb. 1: Daily schools update: Students learn more about Year of the Tiger during Lunar New Year


Dec. 20, 2021 – Jan. 12, 2022Daily schools update: AZ doctors urge schools to require masks as COVID surges

Nov. 23, 2021 – Dec. 17, 2021: Daily schools update: Tolleson Union uses grant to launch Uber-like ride share service for students

Nov. 9, 2021 – Nov. 22, 2021: Daily schools update: Education Advocates get Tax Referendum on 2022 Ballot

Oct. 27, 2021 – Nov. 8, 2021: Daily schools update: Mesa Mother Relieved to get her Young Child Vaccinated

Oct. 12- Oct. 25, 2021Daily schools update: Supply chain issues cause problems for Arizona school cafeterias

Sept. 27 – Oct. 11, 2021Daily Schools Update: How will children becoming eligible for COVID-19 vaccine change schools’ prevention measures?

Sept. 14 – Sept. 27, 2021Daily schools update: Students decision to mask up may have stopped a classroom COVID-19 outbreak

Aug. 24 to Sept. 1, 2021: Daily schools update: COVID-19 outbreaks rise among students in Maricopa County

Aug. 17 to Aug. 23, 2021: Daily schools update: FDA approves Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine

Aug. 3 to Aug. 16, 2021: Daily schools update: Arizona school mask mandates receive presidential praise

July 19 to Aug. 2, 2021Daily schools update: Teens struggle with mental health as school starts

June 20 to July 14, 2021Daily schools update: Arizona lawmakers ban mask requirements in schools

June 14 to June 17, 2021Tempe Union’s board approves comprehensive mental health policy

June 1 to June 11, 2021It’s time to get students enrolled in school for fall & ready for in-person classes

May 17 to May 28, 2021A year after George Floyd’s murder, a look at empathy, equity, what’s changed & what hasn’t

May 10 to May 14, 2021Students ready for graduation ceremonies

May 4 to May 6, 2021Amendment to bill would prohibit teachers from discussing controversial policy & social issues not essential to learning objectives

April 28 to May 3, 2021Thank a teacher during Teacher Appreciation Week for all they do for students

April 21 to April 27, 2021: 3 years after Red for Ed there’s much left to do

April 12 to April 20, 2021: How & why teachers discuss trial with students; Schools keep masks after Gov. rescinds mandate

March 29 to April 9, 2021Children, young teens may be eligible for COVID-19 vaccine before next school year

March 15 to March 26Masks are still required in all schools; Video: Dr. Christ’s news conference today

Feb. 24 to March 11, 2021: COVID-19 aid funds will help AZ students, families & schools

Feb. 11 to Feb. 23U.S. Dept of Ed: Students must take standardized tests, but there’s flexiblity on when & how

Feb. 2 to Feb. 9Video: Supt. Hoffman gives State of Special Education address

Jan. 21 to Feb. 1Black History Mural Month Project to highlight pioneers of the Black community launches in Phoenix

Jan. 10 – Jan 20How students engage with Inauguration Day


Dec. 21, 2020 to Jan 8, 2021Teachers help students deal with attacks on Congress, Capitol

Nov. 30 – Dec. 16Watch it now: Dr. Christ asks people to avoid holiday gatherings with people they do not live with

Nov. 18 – 25COVID-19 cases rise before Thanksgiving adding to school and hospital leaders’ concerns

Nov. 16: More schools return to online learning as COVID-19 cases rise

Nov. 2 – 13: $19 M grant would help schools with teacher development, stipends, reading & math curriculum, summer ed resources and more

Oct. 20 to Oct. 30: AZDHS amends COVID-19 school benchmarks

Oct. 7 – Oct. 19What are teachers doing ahead of elections to support students afterwards

Aug. 25 – Sept. 8: Parents voice concern about online class size; school nurses prepare for students

Aug. 12 – Aug. 24: Students, teachers affected by Zoom outage

July 30 – Aug. 11Parent organizes co-op for learners; group rallies for in-person school days after benchmarks release

July 13- July 30: Teachers prepare for digital learning and back to school

June 29 – July 12Video: Gov. says ‘Goal is to get children back to school when it’s safe;’ Schools lay out learning models

June 29: Video: Gov. delays in-person classes to Aug. 17 due to rise in COVID-19

June 15 – June 29: Video: Gov. pauses re-opening of some businesses as COVID-19 cases rise

June 24: Plan provides more funding, flexible instruction as schools re-open

May 26 – June 12: Increase in COVID-19 cases marks a new daily high

May 20 – 25: AZ Dept. of Ed releases COVID-19 guidance to schools for summer programs, back to school

May 11 – 19: Arizonans consider workplace safety, what back to school will look like amid COVID-19

April 26 – May 10: Stores re-open, COVID-19 testing blitz resumes on Saturday

April 8 – 25You can get tested now if you think you’ve been exposed to COVID-19

March 12 – April 7, 2020Coronavirus response: Cases rise; AZ Day of Giving