Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Joe Donnelly today led 12 Senators in urging Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos to assist students harmed by the 2016 closure of ITT Tech. A sizeable number of students have financial debt due to their education and many have ITT Tech credits with little market value, but it remains unclear if the Department of Education is using all available means to help affected students. That is why Donnelly and the Senators sent a letter to DeVos asking the Department of Education to take swift action.
Many Hoosiers were harmed by the sudden closure of ITT Tech, including veterans. In 2017, Donnelly helped introduce and pass bipartisan legislation, signed into law last August, to assist student veterans enrolled at ITT Tech when it closed. It restored G.I. benefits for credits that did no transfer to the student’s new course of study.
In 2016, the Department of Education promulgated new rules under its “borrower defense” authority to help more students receive a discharge of their federal loan debt. However, under its current leadership, the Department has suspended those rules and frozen an investigation into ITT Tech’s fraudulent statements that misled students.
The Senators said, in part, in the letter, “More than a year after ITT Tech’s closure, significant numbers of former students and their families remain stuck in financial limbo and with credits and degrees of little labor market value. These individuals await a decision from the Department on whether it will exercise its authority to provide debt relief to affected students using all available means.
“The Department must act expeditiously to help ITT Tech borrowers through both its closed school discharge and borrower defense authorities. We are concerned that the Department has provided little information to affected borrowers and the public about the number of successful closed school discharge applications among the eligible population, or the status of pending borrower defense claims.”
To see the full text of the letter, click here.