In a rare act of bipartisanship, 18 Democrats and 18 Republicans have come together to oppose the current Department of Education gainful employment rule. In letter to congressional leadership, the members said:
“…[T]he gainful employment regulation will severely limit some students’ ability to use federal student aid at the college of their choice, a distinguishing tenet of the American higher education system. Institutions affected by this regulation predominately serve lower-income students from nontraditional backgrounds, many of whom need more flexible course schedules in order to balance work, family, and school. The gainful employment regulation would force some of the most flexible and innovative programs to close, reducing education choice and opportunity for students.”
The letter also when on to highlight that this is not the first time members of congress of both parties and the courts rejected similar attempts by the Department of Education to limit access to education.
“Previous iterations of the gainful employment regulation have been firmly rejected by both Republicans and Democrats in Congress, the higher education community, and the federal court system. In both the 112th and 113th congresses, members launched a bipartisan effort to prohibit the Department of Education from implementing the gainful employment regulation. Additionally, in 2012 the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia struck down a majority of the regulation, citing its “arbitrary and capricious” nature.”
PSCUs open doors to many of the 9.1 million unemployed and 90 million undereducated Americans by providing a skills-based education. To remain competitive over the next decade, we must identify between 8 and 23 million new workers with postsecondary skills. PSCUs are a necessary part of that solution, having produced over 800,000 degrees last year alone.