Higher Education

House Republicans press Education Department on colleges’ foreign gift reporting requirements

Dive Transient:

  • A bunch of Home Republicans desires the U.S. Division of Schooling to element how a lot cash it has earmarked for monitoring schools’ largest donations and contracts with international entities within the time since President Joe Biden took workplace.
  • The lawmakers, in a letter Wednesday to Schooling Secretary Miguel Cardona, demanded to know what the Schooling Division budgeted and spent on enforcement of the federal regulation requiring schools to report international items and contracts totaling $250,000 or extra in a yr, often called Part 117. The letter was spearheaded by Virginia Foxx, a North Carolina Republican and chair of the Home Committee on Schooling and the Workforce.
  • Republicans additionally requested how a lot employees time the Schooling Division has dedicated to Part 117-related duties, in addition to whether or not the company is investigating if sure establishments are compliant with the regulation. Lawmakers requested solutions inside two weeks.

Dive Perception:

Part 117 was at one level an obscure piece of the Larger Schooling Act, the primary coverage car for postsecondary training. Faculties generally didn’t adjust to reporting mandates or had been unclear on the regulation’s necessities. 

Nonetheless, the Trump administration made some extent of ramping up oversight on Part 117. It opened investigations into high-profile universities over whether or not they had been in compliance. And it issued a report in October 2020 alleging schools did not disclose billions of {dollars} in international cash.

A month later, the administration threatened to tug federal funding from schools that didn’t observe Part 117.

The Schooling Division has stated little about Part 117 since Biden took workplace. In line with the Home lawmakers’ letter, company officers promised to shut excellent Part 117 investigations into schools and handle “considerations and points” with the web portal by which schools report their items and contracts. 

Republicans are actually asking whether or not that portal is practical. Additionally they are in search of an in depth rationalization of enforcement actions the Schooling Division has taken on Part 117.

They usually need extra info on which a part of the Schooling Division is overseeing Part 117, particularly whether or not it’s the Workplace of Pupil Help.

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