If Betsy DeVos has her way, for-profit colleges that used fraudulent claims to lure students will get off virtually unscathed (“DeVos Again Tries to Limit Loan Relief,” The New York Times, Dec. 11). That’s because student debt will only be totally forgiven if they earned far less than other students in similar programs.
That’s outrageous. The intent of the rule known as the “borrower defense to repayment” was to protect students who assumed debt to attend colleges that published misleading statements about future employment. By preventing students from receiving relief, DeVos is giving the schools the equivalent of diplomatic immunity.
It should matter not one whit that some of these students are earning the median earnings of students from other programs the Education Department considers comparable. The fact remains that the colleges engaged in fraudulent activity. By giving them a get-out-of-jail card, DeVos will only encourage others schools to engage in similar practices, viewing the possible punishment as a cost of doing business.
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