Employees of faith-based and community-based nonprofits are eligible for Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF)

Borrowers who are employed by, the military, federal, state, Tribal, or local government, and many non-profits may be eligible to have their student loans forgiven through the Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) program. Under normal PSLF rules, borrowers must make 120 payments on a Direct Loan while on a qualifying repayment plan and employed by a qualifying public service employer. For a limited time, the Department of Education is waiving some of the rules and allowing borrowers to get credit for past periods of repayment that normally don’t qualify for PSLF. These time-limited changes expire on October 31, 2022. After that, normal PSLF rules will apply. That means if you haven’t already applied for PSLF, you must submit a PSLF form and/or consolidate your non-Direct federal student loans by October 31 to take advantage of the waiver. For more information on PSLF eligibility and requirements, go to PSLF.gov.

Borrowers seeking to determine whether their not-for-profit work qualifies for PSLF can use the Department’s employer eligibility tool. But don’t panic if your employer is listed as “undetermined” or “likely ineligible.” That may indicate that we simply have not added the employer to our database yet. We’ve found that many smaller, local governmental organizations and smaller faith-based nonprofit organizations aren’t in our database yet.

Rest assured—if you are an employee of a local or state government entity or a 501(c)(3) non-profit, your employer will qualify. Also, if you work for a house of worship or similar not-for-profit organization that is tax-exempt under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code but does not have an IRS determination letter, it can still be considered a qualifying employer. Some other non-profits can also qualify if they provide a qualifying public service. Employees of not-for-profit organizations whose job duties include religious activities, such as clergy, are also considered eligible.

If your employer is listed as “undetermined,” use the PSLF Help Tool to generate your PSLF form, and your employer will be reviewed by our employer adjudication team. If you upload a W-2 or other supporting documentation with your form, it can help our research and review, and we can use your submission to add your employer to our database for future use.

Over 211,000 borrowers have already had their loans forgiven through the PSLF waiver and over a million more are closer to forgiveness. Don’t wait, take advantage of this opportunity before the waiver expires on October 31, 2022. Even if you have not been in repayment for 10 years, you can keep working towards PSLF after that. For more information on the limited PSLF waiver, click here.

 

Please note that PSLF is PSLF is different from the one-time student loan debt relief of up to $20,000. PSLF is a program for people who work in public service in federal, state, tribal, or local government, or for a non-profit organization. Borrowers can apply for both PSLF and one-time debt relief. Learn more about one-time debt relief here.

Student Debt Relief

The Biden-Harris Administration is committed to tackling the student debt crisis by providing critical support to student borrowers and advancing racial equity through targeted student debt relief. On August 24th, 2022, the Biden-Harris Administration announced a Student Debt Relief Plan that will result in approximately 20 million borrowers being relieved of all student debt, along with millions more who will see their debt burden significantly reduced. As part of this program, the U.S. Department of Education (ED) will provide up to $20,000 in student debt relief to Federal Pell Grant recipients, and up to $10,000 in debt relief for all others. The program is targeted to provide the most benefit to those with the most need and will be extended to any borrowers with debt held by ED whose individual annual income is less than $125,000, or less than $250,000 for households. It will additionally help fight the racial wealth gap­ – nearly 71% of Black undergraduate borrowers and 65% of Latino undergraduate borrowers are Pell Grant recipients. Sign up at the Department of Education subscription page to be notified when the process has officially opened. You’ll have until December 31st, 2023, to apply.

Read more about the Biden-Harris Administration’s commitment to student borrowers here.

United We Stand Summit

On September 15, President Biden hosted the United We Stand Summit at the White House to counter the corrosive effects of hate-fueled violence on our democracy and public safety. The Summit honored the resilience of communities healing from hateful attacks, including mass shootings, from Oak Creek to Orlando, Charleston, Pittsburgh, El Paso, Atlanta, Buffalo, and beyond. The Summit brought together 21 Uniters from across America who are leading work in their communities to build bridges and address hate and division, including survivors of hate-fueled violence.

Biden also announced the White House Initiative on Hate-Motivated Violence. The new Initiative will strengthen interagency coordination in preventing and responding to hate-motivated violence, leverage federal research, and resources, and enhance engagement and consultation with diverse stakeholders, including communities targeted for who they are or what they believe. This includes coordination between the U.S. Department of Education and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to support educational authorities and educational institutions, in order to improve their ability to prevent hate-based threats and bullying and to recover from hate-based violence.
Communities across the country watched the summit live and engaged in a national conversation about standing together against hate-fueled violence.

To learn more about the Summit and watch the video visit https://unitedwestand.gov/.

Biden-Harris Administration Announces Two New Actions to Address Youth Mental Health Crisis

Rates of depression, anxiety and suicidal thoughts among youth were on the rise even before the pandemic, and now our nation’s youth face an unprecedented mental health crisis. In July the Biden-Harris Administration announced two new actions to strengthen school-based mental health services and address the youth mental health crisis: 1) The U.S. Department of Education is disbursing the first of nearly $300 million the President secured through the FY2022 bipartisan omnibus agreement to expand access to mental health services in schools; and 2) In a letter sent to governors across the country, the Departments of Education and of Health and Human Services highlighted federal resources available to states and schools to invest in mental health services for students.

An additional $1.7 billion for mental health is headed to our schools and communities thanks to the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act (BSCA) signed by President Biden last month.

Read more about the Department’s plans to address the youth mental health crisis here.

Engage Every Student Initiative

To support President Biden’s call for schools to use American Rescue Plan funds to support summer learning and afterschool programs, the Department announced the Engage Every Student Initiative, a public-private partnership to build on investments made by the American Rescue Plan and dramatically expand access to after-school and summer learning programs. National partners are supporting program providers by organizing available technical assistance offerings in one centralized, readily available location. If you have an out-of-school-time program, or are thinking of starting one, there are resources to help! Funding opportunities, training, and other technical assistance may be found at EngageEveryStudent.org.

National Partnership for Student Success Launched

To help ensure that all our nation’s students thrive now and in the future, on July 5 President Biden launched the National Partnership for Student Success (NPSS), a nationwide three-year effort bringing together committed, high-quality education and service organizations. These organizations will recruit, train, support, and engage an additional 250,000 Americans to serve as academic tutors, mentors, and student success coaches for children and youth in preK through high school. The effort is led by the Department, along with AmeriCorps, the Everyone Graduates Center at Johns Hopkins University, and a diverse coalition of state, local, and national organizations, all committed to seeing our students succeed and grow.

Resources for Communities and Educators following the Shooting in Uvalde, TX

We know that in the immediate aftermath of a tragedy like this, the impacted community will receive an outpouring of support and offers of assistance. The Department stands with the Uvalde Consolidated Independent School District and will work through a focused response team to ensure that supports are delivered efficiently, coherently, and in a way that honors the community’s needs and wishes. We are equipped to support for the long-term as the needs will persist for years to come.

The Department’s Office of Safe and Supportive Schools funds technical assistance centers (Readiness and Emergency Management for School (REMS) Center, Center to Improve Social and Emotional Learning and School Safety (SEL), National Center on Safe and Supportive Learning Environments (NCSSLE), and Positive Behavioral Interventions and Support (PBIS Center). Each of these centers is staffed with nationally renowned experts in responding to traumatic incidents, including violence in schools. These centers will be at the Uvalde Consolidated Independent School District’s disposal, including any on-site needs.

Under the Project School Emergency Response to Violence (Project SERV) program, the Department can direct grant support to local educational agencies after a traumatic event. Funds can be used to provide mental health support to students and school staff to restore the learning environment. The Department will support the Uvalde Consolidated Independent School District in seeking these funds.

We recognize that a tragedy of this scale will require a long-term partnership over several years. Whether it is technical assistance provided by program staff or technical assistance center staff who have supported other school communities ravaged by gun violence, targeted grant funding, or programmatic and other flexibilities, the Department is here for the Uvalde Consolidated Independent School District and its students, staff, and families.

Resources from across the Biden-Harris administration:

This tragedy comes on the heels of another mass shooting in Buffalo, NY. A compilation of resources from across the Biden-Harris administration can be found here:

Below you can find additional resources for educators and families, including resources in English and Spanish to provide trauma-informed care to affected adults and children.

U.S. Department of Education resources:

Organization-based resources for trauma-informed care:

Resources in English:
Recursos en español:

NOTE: This list will be updated periodically with additional resources. These links represent just a few examples of the numerous reference materials currently available to the public. The inclusion of resources should not be construed or interpreted as an endorsement by the U.S. Department of Education of any private organization or business listed herein. To recommend additional resources, email edpartners@ed.gov.

Additional Assistance for Students and Institutions Through Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund Grant Program and Expanded SNAP Benefits

To provide ongoing relief from the COVID-19 emergency and implement provisions in the American Rescue Plan recently signed by President Biden, the U.S. Department of Education is announcing additional benefits, outreach, flexibilities, and guidance to assist students, federal student aid applicants, and institutions of higher educations.

American Rescue Plan Funds for All 50 States, Puerto Rico, and the District of Columbia to Help Schools Reopen

The U.S. Department of Education (Department) announced the amount of American Rescue Plan Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ESSER) funding that each State, Puerto Rico, and the District of Columbia will receive to support their efforts to reopen K-12 schools safely this month and equitably expand opportunity for students who need it most.

Department of Education to Host National Safe School Reopening Summit on Wednesday, March 24

In March 2021, following the passage of the American Rescue Plan recently signed by President Biden, the U.S. Department of Education (ED) announced more details today regarding the virtual National Safe School Reopening Summit, which will take place on Wednesday, March 24, 2021 at 12pm EDT. The summit program will include welcoming remarks from First Lady Dr. Jill Biden as well as remarks from Secretary of Education Dr. Miguel A. Cardona, and the Director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Dr. Rochelle Walensky. It will also consist of three panels that will include health experts, educators and education leaders, and students.