USDE Publishes Six Proposed Priorities, Gives Insight Into Biden Administration’s Agenda

On June 30, 2021, the U.S. Department of Education (USDE) published a list of six proposed priorities regarding discretionary grant programs for Secretary Cardona and the Biden Administration’s education agenda. While the priorities mostly cover K-12 issues and a policy response to COVID-19, one particular entry (Priority #5) may provide insight into the Department’s thinking regarding the upcoming regulatory agenda, which is set to kick off later this month.

Continue reading “USDE Publishes Six Proposed Priorities, Gives Insight Into Biden Administration’s Agenda”

New Title IX Guidance Released

On July 20, 2021, the Department of Education (through the Office of Civil Rights “OCR”), unveiled new guidance to help schools understand their obligations under the Betsy DeVos-era Title IX rule. The rule, which went into effect on August 14, 2020, is currently undergoing a comprehensive review based on the Executive Order issued by President Biden on April 6, 2021. 

The 67-page Q&A is divided into 17 sections and provides guidance on a variety of topics covered by the 2020 Title IX amendments, focusing on language within the preamble. The guidance also includes an appendix with sample language schools can utilize (but are not required to) in creating a Title IX policy.  Continue reading “New Title IX Guidance Released”

Duane Morris Education Industry Group Ranked in The Legal 500

Duane Morris’ Education Industry Group has been ranked in The Legal 500 US 2021 guide.

An excerpt from the publication:

Duane Morris LLP’s education practice brings together a multidisciplinary team skilled across litigation, real estate, and employment law, and has a very strong reputation, “rooted in understanding the needs of in-house counsel.”

Testimonials

        • “This practice group is rooted in understanding the needs of in-house counsel and providing recommendation and advice in which operational impact is considered.”
        • “Tony Guida is exceptional at connecting people and issues and staffing matters with key talent, while considering the client need. He is well respected in the field and has served in a variety of capacities in-house prior to move to partner. His appreciation of board expectations, operational needs legal and regulatory concerns leads to unmatched service.”
        • “The Duane Morris team affords us a truly bipartisan approach to our efforts. They are well read and able to breakdown key points of legislation that would have effects on our membership while offering well thought out strategies to embrace or fight against.”

For more information, please visit the firm website.

U.S. Department of Education Proposes Massive Rewrite of Title IV Regulations

Later this month the Department of Education will embark on the first steps towards a massive rewrite of programs authorized by Title IV of the Higher Education Act of 1965. The Department is seeking input on a wide range of federal higher education topics, as identified in the notice, as well as input on how the Department could address gaps in postsecondary outcomes such as retention, completion, loan repayment, and student loan default by race, ethnicity, gender, and other key student characteristics. Continue reading “U.S. Department of Education Proposes Massive Rewrite of Title IV Regulations”

Why You Should Require Students to Get Vaccinated as COVID Retreats

We have entered a new phase in the COVID-19 pandemic in the United States.

We no longer wake up every day to increasing numbers of deaths, infections, and reminders about social distancing and vaccine shortages. Instead, we now read about record low numbers of infections, limited fatalities, and a domestic surplus of vaccine so large that we are now vaccinating children as young as 12 and may be exporting it by June.

And, just last week, the CDC dispensed with mask guidance for vaccinated people. This prompted President Biden to host his first “maskless” appearance of his presidency. For college leaders planning the summer and fall semesters, it’s a 180-degree turnaround that we were afraid to hope for just last year.

Yet here we are. The question now vexing colleges is how to safely reopen on-ground learning with a pandemic in retreat. It’s a nice problem to have, but it still has to be solved.

To read the full text of this article by Duane Morris partner Edward M. Cramp, please visit the University Business website.

Webinar Replay: Reviewing the Third Round of Higher Education Emergency Relief Funds (HEERF III)

A replay of the webinar, “Reviewing the Third Round of Higher Education Emergency Relief Funds (HEERF III),” is now available.

About the Program
On January 14, 2021, the U.S. Department of Education published information regarding the process, timing and allocation levels for the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act, 2021 (CRRSAA), Higher Education Emergency Relief Funds (HEERF II funds) contained in the 2021 Consolidated Appropriations Act. Subsequently, the Department published guidance documents on February 25, March 19 and March 22. In addition, on March 10, Congress passed the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (ARPA), providing yet another round of direct grant funding (HEERF III funds).

COVID-19 Vaccination Policy for Higher Education Institutions: Issues to Consider

As states have opened COVID-19 vaccinations to all individuals 16 and older (and are expanding to age 12 and older, based on the CDC advisory committee’s recent recommendation), institutions of higher education, like many other employers, are considering whether to encourage or possibly mandate their employees to receive a vaccination. Unlike other organizations, institutions of higher education have the added quandary of whether to encourage or mandate COVID-19 vaccinations for students in an effort to return to full in-person instruction.

To read the full text of this Duane Morris Alert, please visit the firm website.

NLRB Withdraws Proposed Rule About Student Workers – What Does It Mean for Private Colleges and Universities?

On March 15, 2021, the National Labor Relations Board withdrew a proposed rule that would have established that students who perform services for compensation at private colleges and universities in connection with their studies are not “employees” within the meaning of the National Labor Relations Act. With additional legislation and rulemaking in the pipeline, private colleges and universities need to pay close attention to what is happening on the federal stage, as well as on their campuses.

To read the full text of this Duane Morris Alert, please visit the firm website.

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The opinions expressed on this blog are those of the author and are not to be construed as legal advice.

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