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A vast array of colleges and universities are looking for money.

That is, they are lobbying for Congress to continue the Perkins Loan Program, a subsidized loan program that Congress failed to renew this fall. While much smaller than other loan and grants programs, it gives money to colleges, which then lend it to needy students. According to the lobbyists, it provides “necessary flexibility” in supporting students. The loans do not accrue interest while the student is in college (unlike most federal loans) and are repaid with a fixed interest rate of 5 percent. There are also some forgiveness plans.

According to Inside Higher Ed, 535 colleges and 53 higher education organizations are pushing for a one-year extension.

Jane S. ShawJane S. Shaw retired as president of the John W. Pope Center for Higher Education Policy in 2015. Before joining the Pope Center in 2006, Shaw spent 22 years in ...

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