The United States Department of Education is working to fix a problem with the new financial aid form that is preventing students with undocumented parents from applying for college scholarships. The Secretary of Education, Miguel Cardona, announced the new FAFSA, or Free Application for Federal Student Aid, which allows low-income students to access financial aid. The form, which is usually available on October 1 of each year, was available for the 2024-2025 academic year almost three months later than usual, on December 31. Since that date, students with parents without a social security number who have attempted to complete the online form have reported an error preventing them from submitting the application.
The Department of Education is working urgently to solve the problem online and is aware of the challenges faced by students whose parents do not have a social security number. However, a precise date for the settlement of the issue has not been given. Students who are U.S. citizens or have permanent residency status can apply to the FAFSA, regardless of whether their parents are undocumented. The National College Attainment Network (NCAN) has said that students with one or two undocumented parents have the option of submitting the FAFSA form on paper and getting in line. The paper form will still require all applicants to provide consent to have their federal tax information accessed through the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and their identity verified.
Since the new FAFSA form for the 2024-2025 academic year has been available, the Department of Education has successfully processed 3.5 million applications. The head of Education stated in a recent interview with EFE about FAFSA that the doors of university education have been opened for many Latinos in the country, and the administration wants to continue advancing to support children with the necessary ability, intelligence, and interest to move forward. Unfortunately, Cardona acknowledged that if one does not have a lot of money in the bank, one cannot continue with their studies, and the administration is working to help them.
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Education, Politics, Immigration