Lawmakers consider changes to student aid application

National News

The Federal Student Aid Application is long and complicated, with more than 100 questions.

Students seeking loans to pay for college must fill it out every year and college administrators say thousands of students have to drop out or postpone college simply because of the difficulties of applying for grants and loans.

Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-TN) believes we’re on the verge of helping 20 million American families.

For students hwo fill out the application, it can be a confusing and time-consuming process.

The form has more than 100 questions and advocates say it’s causing low-income students to miss out on financial aid and give up on college.

Kristina Scott — Executive Director of Alabama Possible, a non-profit that works to reduce education barriers – testified during Tuesday’s Senate hearing that the application should be much shorter.

She said around two dozen questions should do it.

Sen. Doug Jones (D-AL) is also pushing for the effort.

Another big complaint from financial aid applicants is having to submit the same information to multiple government agencies. Even the slightest discrepancy can lead to loans being frozen.

Sen. Alexander hopes to include the reforms in a larger higher education bill due for a vote later this year.

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(This story was originally published on March 12, 2019)

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