Reporter’s notebook

GOP bills require FAFSA form to be ready by Oct. 1

Congressional Republicans have introduced legislation in both chambers that would require the U.S. Education Department to make the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) form available to students each year on October 1, following the department’s recent troubled rollout of the new FAFSA form and process.

Rep. Erin Houchin (R-Indiana), a member of the Committee on Education and the Workforce, introduced H.R. 8932, the FAFSA Deadline Act, which the House committee plans to mark up on Wednesday. Sen. Bill Cassidy (R-Louisiana), ranking member of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee, has introduced companion legislation in the Senate.

The FAFSA form is typically available by October 1, giving students and schools enough time to complete the application and process financial aid offers ahead of acceptance deadlines. Education Secretary Miguel Cardona has told lawmakers at recent congressional hearings regarding the department’s budget requests that the FAFSA form for the 2025-26 academic year will be ready by October 1.

But lawmakers on both sides of the aisle aren’t so confident. ED also has said it won’t publish a draft FAFSA for comment, as is customary, which has added to the uncertainty.

“If the Department is truly on track, as it claims, this bill will formalize its intention and ensure that students receive the support and financial information they need in a timely manner,” Houchin said in a release.

Technical help to foreign companies with U.S. workers

The U.S. is expanding federal workforce technical assistance to foreign multinational businesses in Japan, South Korea and Taiwan in the semiconductor and supply chain industry that are starting or growing their U.S. operations.

The U.S. Department of Commerce announced in June it is expanding SelectTalentUSA, a joint initiative across the U.S. Departments of Commerce, Labor and Education that provides technical assistance to foreign businesses to deliver recruitment and training programs for their U.S. workforce.

The initiative was launched in 2023 as a pilot in the Austria, German, Liechtenstein and Swiss markets, focusing on registered apprenticeships.

“The program’s expansion allows for more investor companies in varying markets to access the American workforce, create a skilled, talent pipeline and create more quality job opportunities,” Commerce said in a release.

About the Author

Matthew Dembicki
Matthew Dembicki edits Community College Daily and serves as associate vice president of communications for the American Association of Community Colleges.
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