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The summary below was written by the Congressional Research Service, which is a nonpartisan division of the Library of Congress, and was published on Jun 23, 2017.
Flexibility to Innovate for College Affordability Act
This bill directs the Department of Education (ED) to establish the Higher Education Regulatory Reform Task Force to review, report on, and make recommendations to reduce, federal regulatory requirements for institutions of higher education (IHEs).
ED must publish the Higher Education Regulatory Reform Report; the President must submit a legislative proposal to implement its recommendations; and Congress must consider legislation to enact such recommendations under expedited procedures.
Additionally, this bill amends title IV (Student Assistance) of the Higher Education Act of 1965 to expand ED's waiver authority under the Experimental Sites Initiative.
Specifically, it authorizes ED to waive title IV statutory and regulatory requirements to allow participating IHEs to award federal student aid: (1) above the annual maximum amount to students whose academic workload exceeds a full-time academic workload; and (2) to students enrolled in remedial or competency-based programs, students or potential students who incur costs (e.g., test fees) for prior learning assessments, and high school students enrolled in a postsecondary education program. A participating IHE must demonstrate that a waiver reduces the total cost of attendance for such students.