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Bipartisan Support for Bringing Back Federal Aid for ‘Ability-to-Benefit’ Students

A bipartisan group of federal lawmakers wants to bring back financial aid for college students who do not hold a high school diploma or its equivalent, like a GED. Congress eliminated aid eligibility for these so-called “ability to benefit” students in 2012. The motivation was to rein in spending on Pell Grants. Another reason was that regulation-minded Democrats wanted to crack down on for-profits, which enrolled a substantial portion of this group of students.