President Obama and congressional leaders continue to negotiate details of a FY 2011 budget deal, but the clock is running out this afternoon. As we anxiously wait to see if the federal government will shut down tonight, we want to give you an update on what it would mean for the federal student aid programs — and ask you to help make sure that student aid cuts in continuing budget negotiations are as modest as possible.

Funding for the 2011-12 Academic Year (beginning July 1, 2011)

Practically speaking, if the government shuts down tonight, the immediate impact on students is not likely to be great. However, the large issue for student aid funding is how much funding will be cut in the deal itself. The budget compromise will most likely include elimination of “year-round Pell” funding, effective July 1, 2011. The fate of SEOG funding is unclear. Funding has already been eliminated for the LEAP state grant program for the 2011-12 award year, meaning that state need-based aid will be reduced $64 million starting July 1, 2011.

Funding for the 2012-13 Academic Year (beginning July 1, 2012)

While the leadership has been working all week on a deal for FY 2011, as outlined above, the House Budget Committee has begun work on the next fiscal year. The ramifications for student aid funding in FY 2012 are dire.

The House Budget Committee approved a FY 2012 budget plan Wednesday that, in the worst-case scenario, could slash the maximum Pell Grant to as low as $1,400 as of July 1, 2012, and could eliminate SEOG and other student aid programs. Committee staff mentioned a $5,000 maximum Pell Grant, the elimination of the in-school interest subsidy for all student loans, and the repeal of SAFRA during the mark up.

Act Now!

Now is the time for us to respond to this effort to slash student aid. As we face the growing prospect of a government shutdown this weekend, we need to remind both Democrats and Republicans that student aid is an investment in the future of our nation, and must be protected. CLICK HERE to go to our Action Center, where you can quickly create and send a message to your members of Congress.

President Obama and congressional leaders continue to negotiate details of a FY 2011 budget deal, but the clock is running out this afternoon.  As we anxiously wait to see if the federal government will shut down tonight, we want to give you an update on what it would mean for the federal student aid programs.  We also want to ask for your continued help in making sure that student aid cuts in continuing budget negotiations are as modest as possible.


  • Comment by Darelle Dove — April 11, 2011 @ 10:12 am

    I think this is not a smart moVe. There are Too many people who are dependent on this financial aid. If this is taken away, how can we pay for school? And no you can’t just say that we could just get our parents to help out. Some people don’t have parents with financial stability to do this. Neither my mother or father can pay 1 cent to help me pay for school. I am doing this with with the financial aid, summer job money that i save up, and the little bit of work-study money that we are granted. If this salary is cut, i don’t know how i will not be able to pay for school. And it’s not like I can just apply for any old college that I want. Sometimes school is hard for me, so I don’t have the best GPA around. If i can not afford to pay for school, God knows the next time i will be able to say I’ve done something with myself. PLEASE DON’T TAKE ITAWAY!!!!

  • Comment by Brittany Miller — April 11, 2011 @ 3:26 pm

    This would end up being one of the worst things that could happen. If you take away financial aid money, then you need to make it where there is no education needed to have a job. There is no way people can afford going to school when they have a single parent raising them who barely has enough to make it from paycheck to paycheck. This would cause less people to get an education and more problems in the economy. The unemployment rate would rise dramatically because you can’t get a job without an education anymore. I believe that if financial aid is taken away, there is no point in having elementary through high school either. If you are going to say get an education, then it needs to be supported and if not then you might as well do away with any education period. Please Do Not Take Away Financial Aid!

  • Comment by Admin — April 11, 2011 @ 3:41 pm

    Darell and Brittany – Thanks for sharing your comments! Feel free to also post them on our Facebook page @ http://www.facebook.com/studentaidalliance

  • Comment by Tracy Merriman — April 12, 2011 @ 7:36 pm

    Oh my, this is awful. I am a senior at Gardner-Webb University, and I am preparing to graduate this December 2011. Cutting any of the funding provided for tuition and other fees for college would be a major set back for me. I am really close to graduation and looking forward the moment when I am holding that degee in my hand. I also, have a college student and this would not benefit my child either. We rely very much on the funding that is available to us to help us while get an education. What is going to happen to all of the future students graduating from High School, where will they go, what will they do? There are no jobs here in the U.S. that will hire you without the education required, so why take that from anyone who desires to go out and improve their lifestlye by educating themselves so they can get the job that will allow them to do so. Prayer is much needed, and Congress needs to look in other areas for cutting funds. How about starting at their own desk and take a pay cut. Surely they won’t miss that. There is too much other unecessary spending goin on that can stand in the gap and take a cut. Leave education alone and let people grow.

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