FOIA

Financial Responsibility

 

The U.S. Department of Education is required by statute to monitor and evaluate the financial stability of higher education institutions that receive Title IV federal student aid funding. The Department's analysis of a school’s financial health is represented by the annually produced financial composite score.

FOIA Requests


Documents Regarding Recertifications, Collected Liabilities, and Letters of Credit - July 7, 2021

Seeking: In July 2021, Student Defense submitted multiple FOIA requests for data regarding schools participating in Title IV, HEA programs, including:

Documents

On September 29, 2021, the Department produced a set of responsive documents, which are available here.  


Pre-Acquisition Letters Responding to Requests for Approval of Change of Ownership and/or Control - July 2, 2021

Seeking: Copies of all pre-acquisition letters or other documents the Department has sent to institutions approving, denying or otherwise responding to the institutions’ notification of or request for approval for a change of ownership and/or control, for the period between January 1, 2016 and February 8, 2021. 

Documents

On July 15, 2021, the Department produced a set of responsive documents, which are available here

 

FSA Change-in-Ownership Manual - May 20, 2021

Seeking: A copy of the most recent version of the Federal Student Aid (“FSA”) Change-in-Ownership Guidance manual or any comparable or successor manual used by FSA analysts and staff.

Documents

On May 27, 2021 the Department produced the responsive document, which is available here


FSA Procedures Manual - May 20, 2021

Seeking: Copies of the most recent versions of the Federal Student Aid (“FSA”) Eligibility Procedures manual, FSA Financial Analysis Procedures manual, FSA Program Review Procedures manual, and FSA Compliance Audit Procedures manual or any successor manuals used by FSA analysts and staff.

Documents

On May 28, 2021 the Department produced the responsive document, which is available here

 

Documents Regarding Unpaid Liabilities Owed to the Department of Education - February 8, 2021

Seeking: A complete listing of all institutions with unpaid liabilities stemming from closures or compliance and enforcement actions, including the amount of those liabilities, and the date on which the liabilities were assessed.

Documents

On April 15, 2021, the Department produced a set of responsive documents, which are available here

 

Change in Ownership Applications - February 5, 2021

Seeking: All change in ownership applications or change in control applications submitted to the Department from January 1, 2017, to the date of this request.

Documents

On June 22, 2021 the Department produced a set of responsive documents, which are available here

 

Letters of Credit Held by the Department of Education - August 14, 2020

Seeking: A detailed log that provides information regarding every letter of credit currently held by the Department that has been posted by, or on behalf of, any institution participating in one or more Title IV, HEA programs.

Documents

On January 22, 2021 the Department provided a Final Response to this request. The responsive document is available here.


Letters of Credit Held by the Department of Education - January 30, 2020

Seeking: A copy of every letter of credit currently held by the Department that has been posted by, or on behalf of, any institution participating in one or more Title IV, HEA programs as well as a copy of every communication from the Department wherein the Department requested or demanded an institution to post a letter of credit that is currently held by the Department.

Documents: After a series of monthly productions, the Department provided a final response letter on December 29, 2020

 

Documents Regarding La'James International College HCM2 Status - December 17, 2019

Seeking: Student Defense requested five subsets of documents pertaining to the Department's decision to place La'James International College on Heightened Cash Monitoring II Status:

  1. All records relating to ED’s 2015 program review of LJIC’s Des Moines, Fort Dodge, and Cedar Falls campuses.
  2. All records regarding ED’s determination to place LJIC on HCM2 status beginning on September 1, 2017.
  3. Any supporting documentation provided by LJIC to ED from September 1, 2017, to the present as part of its HCM2 submissions, including but not limited to, “a list of all graduated and withdrawn students, organized by campus location for whom LJIC has not posted earned Title IV, HEA program funds.”
  4. All records from September 1, 2017, to the present regarding the annual compliance audits conducted by an independent auditor regarding LJIC’s compliance with the cash monitoring requirements, including any supporting documentation.
  5. All records from January 1, 2017, to the present relating to any complaints received regarding LJIC, including complaints filed by Ashley Coers, Jenna (or Jeanna) Holmes, and Philip McFatridge.

Documents

On May 13, 2020, the Department produced a set of responsive documents. These documents are available here

 

Documents Regarding Borrower Defense Notifications - May 15, 2019

Seeking: Student Defense submitted multiple FOIA requests, on May 15, 2019 and May 21, 2019, for documents pertaining to the Department’s March 15, 2019 Announcement detailing implementation of the 2016 Borrower Defense Rule. See 81 Fed. Reg. 75,926 (Nov. 1, 2016). Specifically, these FOIA requests asked for copies of notifications sent from institutions of higher education to the Department, and documents constituting comments submitted by any member of the public on the guidance contained in the Announcement.

On October 30, 2019 Student Defense sued the Department of Education to force the release of these documents.

Documents

The Department of Education provided a series of monthly productions of responsive documents. Documents obtained are available here:

 

Letters of Credit Held by the Department of Education - March 21, 2018

Seeking: A copy of every letter of credit currently held by the Department that has been posted by, or on behalf of, any institution participating in Title IV HEA programs as well as a copy of every communication from the Department wherein the Department requested an institution to post a letter of credit that is currently held by the Department. 

Documents

On July 16, 2018 Student Defense sued to force the release of the documents. On January 16, 2019 and April 24, 2020 the Department produced responsive documents.  


Documents Regarding ED's Oversight of Title IV Schools’ Financial Health & Financial Responsibility Composite Scores - December 11, 2018

Seeking: Communication records from the Department to all institutions of higher education informing such institutions of their financial responsibility composite score for any fiscal year ending between July 2016 and June 2017 as well July 2017 and June 2018.

Documents

On September 21, 2020 the Department produced a set of responsive documents. (1 GB pdf)