Students aided by Cromnibus bill being passed

Jan 30, 2015

The recent "Cromnibus" bill passed by Congress to maintain government operations partially reinstates the ability-to-benefit (ATB) provision, which provides Pell Grant and student loan access to low-income students who lack a high school diploma or equivalent and who enroll in a career pathways program, enabling them to receive student aid by passing an exam or successfully completing six credit hours.

The change goes into effect immediately, but the amount of Pell Grant for which ATB students will be eligible varies based on enrollment date. Those who enter a career pathways program before July 1, 2015, will be eligible for the maximum Pell Grant award of $5,830, while those enrolling after July 1, 2015, will be limited to only the maximum discretionary Pell Grant award of $4,860.

Restoration of ATB is important to the expansion of programs like Accelerate Texas that concurrently enrolls students who lack a high school diploma into contextualized Adult Education classes that support learning success in career pathway programs.

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