There have been recent additions to two separate ED publications. The first is a new volume, “The Direct Loan Program”, being added to the Blue Book. This release is volume 8 of the newly updated Blue Book (2013 edition). As noted in FAME’s April 2013 Inside Report, the 2013 volumes released this year provide the first updates to the Blue Book since 2005. Although typically the Blue Book is geared to those individuals responsible for managing, accounting for, and reporting on the use of Title IV funds at an institution (e.g. fiscal office personnel), this volume will be of interest to anyone wanting to have a more comprehensive knowledge of the Direct Loan (DL) program. This volume covers the whole gamut of the DL program, from loan limits, the Master Promissory Note, and required counseling, to disbursements and reconciliation. It gives ample opportunity in the material covered to either learn of the DL program initially, or to receive a refresher on items that a particular staff member may not work with on a daily basis, but would like to know more about.
The second recent release from ED is Volume 2 of the 2013-2014 Federal Student Aid Handbook. This volume is the one that addresses “School Eligibility and Operations”. A number of changes and/or enhanced explanations are provided in this edition of Volume 2. Some items addressed for the first time or that are more thoroughly covered include a discussion of direct assessment programs, an example of separation of duties for family members, guidance related to adding a new State authorization to an institution’s ECAR, information about Executive Order 13607 as it relates to schools who wish to have their students receive military and veterans educational benefits, and clarification that schools must make available upon request the results of its biennial review of its drug and alcohol abuse prevention program as well as the methods and data used to support the conclusions of its review. These are just some of the additions and changes in this most recently released volume of the 2013-2014 FSA Handbook. Schools will be well served to ensure they are familiar with the latest information in this edition.
If you have any questions regarding this information, please contact your Customer Service Representatives via support.fameinc.com.