When Oversight Makes Economic Sense

Bloomberg reports that, according to the Government Accountability Office, lax oversight is leading to unqualified students getting federal aid to attend for-profit universities:

The GAO said school officials or test administrators at some for-profit schools violated rules designed to ensure all student-aid recipients are qualified. Students must have a high school diploma or the equivalent, or pass a test of basic math and English skills to qualify for federal student loans.

The report’s findings are “extremely troubling and warrant further examination by Congress,” House Education Committee Chairman George Miller, a California Democrat, said today in an e-mailed statement. He said the panel’s subcommittee on higher education will hold hearings on whether for-profit schools are “gaming the system” to enroll “students who may not be fully ready for college and may be more likely to default” on loans.

GAO investigators found in one case that a test administrator at a for-profit school provided answers to some questions on the skills test. Officials at two proprietary schools helped prospective students obtain invalid high school diplomas, according to the report, which didn’t name the schools.

Just another in the long list of scandals that plague our broken higher ed financial aid system.

Jesse Singal

Jesse Singal is a former opinion writer for The Boston Globe and former web editor of the Washington Monthly. He is currently a master's student at Princeton's Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Policy. Follow him on Twitter at @jessesingal.