In 2010, the Department of Education piloted a FAFSA Completion Project to assist local educational agencies (LEAs) and secondary school administrators in determining which of their students have completed a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) for the upcoming school year. The pilot currently provides principals, counselors and college access professionals across 20 participating school districts and high schools with verifiable and actionable information to use in increasing FAFSA completion among their student population. Key studies have indicated that FAFSA completion correlates strongly with college enrollment, particularly among low-income populations.
Since the FAFSA Completion Project’s launch, the Department has received increasing requests from LEAs and secondary schools to expand the program. Today, the Secretary announced the second phase of an expansion effort to provide additional school districts with student-specific FAFSA completion data. Today’s announcement invites an additional 12 single-high-school LEAs, including single-high-school, rural LEAs, to participate via random selection in the program and obtain FAFSA completion data for their students for the 2012-2013 FAFSA processing year that began on January 1, 2012. An invitation for multiple-high school LEAs to participate in the expansion effort was announced in January and closed earlier this month.
The Department will accept requests from single-high-school LEAs to participate in the pilot expansion through May 1, 2012. For more information on this opportunity, view the invitation letter (pdf) and visit our frequently asked questions portal at www.fsa4counselors.ed.gov.