They became teacher and agreed to teach in certain low-income, certain subject shortages, and under-served districts. For doing this, the teachers were given grants for their education.
But there was a catch. Each year for four years following, as they teached, they had to complete paperwork that verified their employment. Sounds simple. But the details of the paperwork not only got lost in translation, many times it just got lost. How and when to complete the paperwork sometimes went unnoticed, undone, and just undoable. Even the Department if Education admitted this. The result?
Many teachers had these grants turned into loans, and now were saddled with payments. If the date was missed for verification, there was little recourse for the loan payments that were now due.
There was no way to stop the loan conversion. Starting teachers in many states and districts don't make a whole lot. And many teachers were now burdened with making loan payments. Even as they thought they might be debt free. And we know the economy has just recently been getting better.
What happens now? The Department of Education has agreed to allow anyone who could not meet deadlines or complete paperwork, a second chance. They will now be given an opportunity to submit paperwork that verifies past employment.
If you are a teacher under the TEACH Grant program, have completed four years of teaching in the subject or place that was designated to be part of the program, you should now be able to get the loan forgiven.
Don't expect this to be done automatically. If you are a teacher that fits this scenario, start applying today.
And there are warnings. You only had eight years to complete the four. If you went elsewhere before the four years, or you never had a total of four years at the right location or subject, you will be out of luck. You will be saddled with the loan.
Here is the link to apply: https://studentaid.ed.gov/sa/types/grants-scholarships/teach#teach-reconsideration
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