EWA Radio

No Forgiveness: Teachers Struggle With Unfair Student Loan Debt
Two federal programs under scrutiny, as thousands of borrowers caught in administrative missteps
(EWA Radio: Episode 217)

Two federal programs that were supposed to steer college students to public service jobs like teaching in high-poverty schools instead became mired in missteps, as the recipients unexpectedly found their grants wrongly converted into high-interest loans. Cory Turner of NPR’s education team spent 18 months looking at problems with the TEACH Grant program, and his findings helped spur the U.S. Department of Education to reverse course. He’s also been digging into Congress’ attempts to address problems with private servicers hired by the feds to administer the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Fund. How did open records factor into Turner’s reporting process? What techniques did he use to sort through the red tape and find the human stories underneath? And how can education reporters carve out time for investigative work, even on tight deadlines?

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