Breakthrough on College Admission and Financial Aid
- Friday, January 03, 2003
Chris Klicka worked with Eric Jasso, the Deputy Counsel for the Postgraduate Education, to resolve the discrepancy. On March 6, 2002, Klicka testified before the Regulatory Board of the U.S. Department of Education. Klicka explained that the Higher Education Amendments of 1998 (which HSLDA) drafted, make it clear that students who complete a secondary education in a homeschool setting are eligible for federal financial aid.
Yet the Handbook indicates that if those same students are accepted into a college, the college will lose its federal funding. The Regulatory Commission thus signed off on new language drafted by Klicka and Eric Jasso to correct the Handbook errors.
In April, Jasso issued a letter that HSLDA widely distributed to help clarify the problem in the interim period, while the Handbook was being revised. Nonetheless, some universities remained stubborn and refused to change their policies, fearing the loss of institutional eligibility if they accepted homeschooled students who were under the age of 18. HSLDA attorneys worked many hours with colleges and universities helping homeschool students finally gain admission in nearly every case.
Homeschoolers of Any Age Can be Admitted to Federally Funded Colleges
The U.S. Department of Education has finally spoken in plain words on this issue: colleges need not fear losing federal funding by admitting homeschool students. They are free to admit homeschool students at any age, and those homeschool students are eligible for personal financial aid as well.
We are thankful for the revisions in the Handbook and the new "Dear Colleague" letter. We believe that this will clear the air and enable homeschoolers to easily gain admission to colleges based on the merit of their excellent academic programs and will also enable homeschoolers to freely obtain student financial assistance without any further unnecessary and illegal barriers.
Visit the Home School Legal Defense Association at www.hslda.org
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