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H.R. 1402: More Choice for Career Training Act of 2021


The text of the bill below is as of Feb 26, 2021 (Introduced).


I

117th CONGRESS

1st Session

H. R. 1402

IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

February 26, 2021

introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on Education and Labor

A BILL

To amend the Federal Pell Grant Program to support career training opportunities for young Americans.

1.

Short title

This Act may be cited as the More Choice for Career Training Act of 2021.

2.

Supporting career training opportunities for all young Americans

(a)

Amendments

(1)

Beginning on the date of enactment of this Act

Section 401 of the Higher Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 1070a) is amended by adding at the end the following:

(k)

Alternative certification program

(1)

In general

The Secretary shall devise an alternative certification program to enable students to use Federal Pell Grants to enroll in educational programs (either at eligible institutions or institutions that are not eligible institutions) for which students are not otherwise eligible to use Federal Pell Grants under this section.

(2)

Definitions

In this subsection:

(A)

Program completion rate

The term program completion rate means the percentage of enrollees in a program who successfully complete the program requirements within the standard program duration.

(B)

Job placement rate

The term job placement rate means the percentage of graduates who have obtained full-time employment in the graduate’s field of study.

(3)

No requirement for accreditation or state authorization

The alternative certification program shall not require accreditation, State authorization, minimum instructional hours, or minimum classroom time of educational programs for which students may use Federal Pell Grants to enroll pursuant to this subsection.

(4)

Continuous operation; determination of eligibility

The Secretary shall—

(A)

only certify an educational program under the alternative certification program that—

(i)

has been in existence for not less than 5 years; and

(ii)

has an annual cost of enrollment for a year that is equal to or less than the maximum Federal Pell Grant award applicable to that year;

(B)

make an initial determination of educational program eligibility under the alternative certification program not later than 180 days after the date of application of the educational program; and

(C)

re-evaluate educational program eligibility under the alternative certification program not less often than once every 5 years.

(5)

Information to assess program eligibility

(A)

In general

Each educational program applying for certification or re-certification under the alternative certification program, the Secretary of the Treasury, and the Secretary of Labor shall submit to the Secretary all data necessary for the Secretary to assess educational program eligibility under the alternative certification program.

(B)

Privacy

The Secretary shall keep all student data submitted under subparagraph (A) private and confidential.

(6)

Determinations of program eligibility

The Secretary shall make a determination of educational program eligibility under the alternative certification program on the basis of student outcomes in the educational program, including based on each of the following:

(A)

Program completion rate.

(B)

Job placement rate within 90 days of program completion.

(C)

Job placement rate within 12 months of program completion.

(D)

Graduate median starting salary.

(E)

Graduate median salary 5 years after program completion.

(F)

Graduate average starting salary.

(G)

Graduate average salary 5 years after program completion.

(7)

Decertification

The Secretary may decertify an educational program under the alternative certification program if the program meets any of the following:

(A)

The program completion rate is less than 70 percent.

(B)

The job placement rate within 90 days of program completion is less than 50 percent.

(C)

The job placement rate within 12 months of program completion is less than 70 percent.

(D)

The graduate median starting salary is less than 200 percent of the Federal poverty level for a one-person household.

(E)

The graduate median salary 5 years after program completion is less than 300 percent of the Federal poverty level for a one-person household.

(8)

Rule of construction

Nothing in this subsection shall be construed to extend eligibility with respect to an educational program that is certified under the alternative certification program under this subsection to other programs under this title.

.

(2)

Beginning on July 1, 2023

Section 401 of the Higher Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 1070a), as amended by section 703 of division FF of Public Law 116–260, is further amended by adding at the end the following:

(k)

Alternative certification program

(1)

In general

The Secretary shall devise an alternative certification program to enable students to use Federal Pell Grants to enroll in educational programs (either at eligible institutions or institutions that are not eligible institutions) for which students are not otherwise eligible to use Federal Pell Grants under this section.

(2)

Definitions

In this subsection:

(A)

Program completion rate

The term program completion rate means the percentage of enrollees in a program who successfully complete the program requirements within the standard program duration.

(B)

Job placement rate

The term job placement rate means the percentage of graduates who have obtained full-time employment in the graduate’s field of study.

(3)

No requirement for accreditation or state authorization

The alternative certification program shall not require accreditation, State authorization, minimum instructional hours, or minimum classroom time of educational programs for which students may use Federal Pell Grants to enroll pursuant to this subsection.

(4)

Continuous operation; determination of eligibility

The Secretary shall—

(A)

only certify an educational program under the alternative certification program that—

(i)

has been in existence for not less than 5 years; and

(ii)

has an annual cost of enrollment for a year that is equal to or less than the maximum Federal Pell Grant award applicable to that year;

(B)

make an initial determination of educational program eligibility under the alternative certification program not later than 180 days after the date of application of the educational program; and

(C)

re-evaluate educational program eligibility under the alternative certification program not less often than once every 5 years.

(5)

Information to assess program eligibility

(A)

In general

Each educational program applying for certification or re-certification under the alternative certification program, the Secretary of the Treasury, and the Secretary of Labor shall submit to the Secretary all data necessary for the Secretary to assess educational program eligibility under the alternative certification program.

(B)

Privacy

The Secretary shall keep all student data submitted under subparagraph (A) private and confidential.

(6)

Determinations of program eligibility

The Secretary shall make a determination of educational program eligibility under the alternative certification program on the basis of student outcomes in the educational program, including based on each of the following:

(A)

Program completion rate.

(B)

Job placement rate within 90 days of program completion.

(C)

Job placement rate within 12 months of program completion.

(D)

Graduate median starting salary.

(E)

Graduate median salary 5 years after program completion.

(F)

Graduate average starting salary.

(G)

Graduate average salary 5 years after program completion.

(7)

Decertification

The Secretary may decertify an educational program under the alternative certification program if the program meets any of the following:

(A)

The program completion rate is less than 70 percent.

(B)

The job placement rate within 90 days of program completion is less than 50 percent.

(C)

The job placement rate within 12 months of program completion is less than 70 percent.

(D)

The graduate median starting salary is less than 200 percent of the Federal poverty level for a one-person household.

(E)

The graduate median salary 5 years after program completion is less than 300 percent of the Federal poverty level for a one-person household.

(8)

Rule of construction

Nothing in this subsection shall be construed to extend eligibility with respect to an educational program that is certified under the alternative certification program under this subsection to other programs under this title.

.

(b)

Effective date

The amendment made by subsection (a)(2) shall take effect as if included in the enactment of Division FF of the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021 (Public Law 116–260).