Jun 28, 2007
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Thursday, June 28 , 2007
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Senators Urge Spellings to Refrain from Imposing New Accreditation Regulations

By Amit Agarwal

Senator Edward M. Kennedy and members of the Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee have asked U.S. Secretary of Education Margaret Spellings to refrain from imposing new accreditation regulations on colleges and universities until Congress reauthorizes the Higher Education Act.

In a letter written to Spellings, 18 of the 21 senators on the HELP Committee stated that Congress is considering changes to current accreditation provisions. The letter says these changes would strengthen the nation's accreditation system by clearly defining the responsibilities of the Department of Education regarding recognition of organizations and accreditation agencies.

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"Climate Neutrality" is the Buzz Phrase on U.S. Campuses

By Nihit Aurora

Our planet faces imminent environmental threat due to global warming. Average global temperatures have increased by around one degree Celsius since the last century. Much of this warming has been attributed to human activity and the industrial revolution. Businesses, manufacturers, and scientific institutions around the world are focusing on a variety of measures to combat global warming.

There is growing awareness around the globe of the need to cut back on greenhouse gas emissions. Common sources of greenhouse gases include thermal power plants and automobile exhaust.

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Higher Education Act reauthorization bill would increase financial aid

A bipartisan Higher Education Act (HEA) reauthorization bill cosponsored by Senators Edward M. Kennedy and Mike Enzi includes increases in the maximum Pell Grant and other student financial aid for 2008-2009. If passed, the bill would also place a cap on borrowers' monthly loan payments. Funding for these measures would be generated by cutting subsidies to lenders that participate in the Federal Family Education Loan (FFEL) Program. The bill would create a code of conduct for schools, lenders, and guaranty agencies to ensure that lender-college agreements benefit students. It also proposes a pilot program for auctioning PLUS Loans and expands eligibility for National Science and Mathematics Access to Retain Talent (SMART) Grants.

Cuomo and McCollum urge Senate to pass Student Loan Sunshine Act

New York Attorney General Andrew M. Cuomo and Florida Attorney General Bill McCollum, along with about 30 other attorneys general, have urged the Senate to pass the Student Loan Sunshine Act as soon as possible. The act protects students and families from deceptive practices in the college lending industry. The senators made the request in a bipartisan letter to U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell. According to Cuomo, the U.S. needs a federal law that will augment states' investigations of inappropriate and illegal activities in the lending industry. New York already has a law that protects students from such activities.

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