“Closing the 90/10 loophole has been the top higher education priority for nearly all veterans and military organizations for many years, and we are relieved and hopeful that this will finally remove the target from the backs of service members, veterans, and military families,” said Carrie Wofford, president of Veterans Education Success, an advocacy group.
Because of the loophole, the for-profit school industry has drawn intense scrutiny from some lawmakers and veteran advocates for conducting questionable business practices to recruit veterans. One for-profit school, the University of Phoenix, was required to refund $50 million and cancel another $141 million in debt for its marketing practices toward GI Bill recipients.
In 2018, the Department of Veterans Affairs inspector general warned the agency could waste $2.3 billion in payments to “ineligible colleges” during the next five academic years. In the bulk of cases, the payments would go to for-profit universities or bogus schools.
Veteran advocates have lobbied against the loophole for years. In 2019, 37 veteran advocacy groups penned a letter to key lawmakers highlighting the importance of closing the loophole.
“Thousands of military-connected students have been significantly impacted with the recent closures of institutions such as ITT Tech, Corinthian, Virginia College, Art Institutes and Argosy Universities. In the last year alone, 1,230 college campuses have closed,” according to the letter. “Closing the loophole will also protect taxpayer funds. Congress designed the 90/10 rules to be a market viability test to protect taxpayers from artificially propping up failing colleges.”
Read the full article at Stars & Stripes here.