Canada Student Loans Program Update Presentation to the Canadian Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators Annual Conference Calgary Alberta June 13, 2011
Purpose • Provide update on the Canada Student Loans Program (CSLP). • Overview of loans, grants, and repayment assistance take-up. • Recent improvements to student financial assistance (SFA) measures • Enhancements in the delivery of SFA • Addressing student financial aid literacy • Ongoing research and outreach efforts • Further collaboration and engagement opportunities with CASFAA.
The CSLP provides financial assistance for students • The Government of Canada recognizes the vital role of post-secondary education (PSE) for both individual success as well as the future prosperity of Canada. • The CSLP is a key federal instrument for providing financial assistance to PSE students through the provision of loans, grants, and repayment assistance. • Since 1964, more than 4.3 million students have received close to $32 billion in loans. • The Government continues to improve SFA measures by enhancing supports for PSE students both in-study and in-repayment.
The CSLP has seen an increase in the uptake of student financial assistance • In the 2009-10 academic year, the CSLP provided nearly $2.7 billion in loans and grants to more than 400,000 students; a significant increase from 2008-09. • In 2010-11, the CSLP has continued to see a rise in both dollars disbursed and the number of recipients receiving assistance. • Nearly all participating provinces and territories are recording year-over-year increases in assistance.
The CSLP is providing more non-repayable grants • Budget 2008 introduced the Canada Student Grants Program (CSGP) to provide upfront, non-repayable assistance to students from underrepresented groups. • Canada Student Grants are available for: • Students from Low-Income Families • Students from Middle-Income Families • Students with Dependants • Students with Permanent Disabilities • In the 2009-10, over 290,000 students received more than $590 million in non-repayable Canada Student Grants. • The average amount of grant per borrower increased from $406 in 2008-09 to $1465 in 2009-10, an increase of $1060. • With the introduction of the CSGP, non-repayable grant funding has displaced a portion of loan assistance. • The average value of Canada Student Loans has decreased from approximately $5,700 in 2008-2009 to $5,200 in 2009-2010.
The CSLP also has improved supports for part-time learners • Part-time students are no longer required to repay their student loans while in study; although, interest will continue to accrue • Increased access to PSE through increased loan funding options for part-time students: • The maximum part-time CSL limit has gone from $4,000 to $10,000 • Part-time students no longer need to justify why they cannot attend full-time studies to qualify for loans • Since 2009, the number of part-time students who have benefited from CSLP has increased 94% for those receiving loans and 20% for those receiving grants.
In addition, the CSLP is helping borrowers experiencing difficulty in repayment • Budget 2008 also introduced the Repayment Assistance Plan to support borrowers experiencing difficulties in repaying their Canada Student Loans. • Under RAP, monthly payments are limited to less than 20 percent of a borrower’s income and no borrower has a repayment period of more than 15 years. • For borrowers with low or no income, no payment is required on their Canada Student Loan. For example, a single borrower with income of less than $20,000 would not be required to make any payment on their student loans. • In 2009-10, more than 155,000 borrowers benefited from RAP; of which approximately 90% were not required to make any payments on their student loan.
Budget 2011 has introduced further improvements to SFA • The Government announced new SFA measures in Budget 2011 which will provide greater supports for: • Part-time students. • Students who work while in-study. • Doctors and nurses who commit to work in rural and remote communities.
Budget 2011 has introduced further improvements to SFA (con’t) • Supports for Part-time Learners • Enhancing eligibility thresholds for student loans and grants for part-time students. • Eliminating the in-study interest rate for part-time students bringing it down from prime plus 2.5 per cent to zero. • Increasing In-study Income Exemption • Doubling the weekly in-study income exemption from $50 per week to $100 per week for students who work while in school.
Budget 2011 has introduced further improvements to SFA (con’t) • Loan Forgiveness for doctors and nurses who commit to work in under-served rural and remote communities. • Canada Student Loan forgiveness of up to $8,000 per year to a maximum of $40,000 for family physicians. • Canada Student Loan forgiveness of up to $4,000 per year to a maximum of $20,000 for nurse practitioners and nurses.
Alongside program changes, the CSLP is working with provincial and territorial partners to improve the delivery of SFA to students • There are currently four participating jurisdictions which have an integration agreement with the CSLP (Ontario, Saskatchewan, Newfoundland & Labrador, and New Brunswick). • British Columbia will integrate with the CSLP beginning in the 2011-12 school year. • Integration more closely aligns federal and provincial programs and provides the delivery of SFA (federal and provincial) as a single product from the perspective of the borrower.
In addition to increasing partnerships with provinces and territories , the CSLP is also working with its partners to modernize and streamline student financial aid • As part of the Service Delivery Vision (SDV) announced in Budget 2008, there are 3 key initiatives currently in progress: • A one-time multi-year loan agreement • Master Student Financial Assistance Agreement (MSFAA) • Confirmation of enrolment online • Electronic Confirmation of Enrolment (ECE) • Online Application for Repayment Assistance • Single Online Application for Repayment Assistance Measures (SOARAM)
Master Student Financial Assistance Agreement • The MSFAA is a multiple-year loan agreement that removes the need for borrowers to sign a new agreement for each disbursement of funds. • The CSLP MSFAA remains valid until a borrower moves to another province/territory or takes a break in studies of two years or more. • The MSFAA will benefit students and administrators by: • Improving borrower experience by reducing paper work • Only one in-person authentication required for the entire loan time period • Cost savings in administration materialized through a reduction in producing and handling a paper based system
Electronic Confirmation of Enrolment • ECE simplifies the delivery of loans and grants, replacing paper-based confirmation of enrolment with online systems. • The ECE will benefit students and administrators by: • Eliminating the need for a paper Certificate of Eligibility to be taken to educational institutions for signature and sent to the NSLSC to be processed. • Reducing borrower line-ups during registration times. • Allowing Educational Institution staff to focus their time on other student matters
Single Online Application for Repayment Assistance Measures • SOARAM will provide borrowers a single online application to access all repayment assistance programming across jurisdictions. • SOARAM will benefit students and administrators by: • Improving the delivery of repayment-assistance measures through the use of an online platform • Increasing use of RAP for those borrowers who would benefit from repayment assistance • Reducing the complexity of the repayment assistance application and delivery process • Realizing cost and program-delivery efficiencies
In addition to improvements in SFA policy and delivery, the CSLP also recognizes the importance of improving student financial literacy • The CSLP has also introduced several projects to enhance financial aid literacy. • Entrance/exit Counseling • An interactive online module which serves to educate borrowers on student loan borrowing and repayment. • Financial Capability Module • An online module for CanLearn.ca designed to help graduating high school students begin to plan their post-secondary education financing.
In addition to improvements in SFA policy and delivery, the CSLP also recognizes the importance of improving student financial literacy (con’t) • Implementing the Service Delivery Vision which will streamline processes and improve the level of information and program services available online. • Working with several key Financial Literacy organizations (Financial Consumer Agency of Canada, Credit Canada) to ensure that information about student loans and grants is available online and to clients. • Continually revising forms, letters and communications tools such as the CanLearn.ca website, for simplicity and clarity.
Ongoing CSLP research • The CSLP continues to examine new and emerging trends in the Canadian post-secondary environment. • CSLP and CESP Data Linkage Project • The CSLP and the Canada Education Saving Program (CESP) have collaborated on an extensive data linkage project to analyze CSLP borrowers who are also accessing Registered Education Savings Plan (RESP) funds. • Life After High School Project • The CSLP has developed a Pilot Project in BC which engages students at the high-school level and measures their subsequent experience with postsecondary education and student financial assistance. • CSLP is collecting data related to SFA in Canada: • PSE indicators and student demographics • Employment and labour-market outcomes of PSE students and graduates • Costs and financial resources associated with PSE
CSLP outreach efforts • CSLP Exhibit and Presentations: • Speak directly with prospective borrowers and stakeholders at education and career fairs through the CSLP Exhibit Program. • In the fall of 2011, Outreach will introduce an Interactive Kiosk - provides a unique, fun, interactive and informative experience • Recently introduced the use of a survey tablet to receive feedback on the exhibit booth and knowledge of the staff. • info@canlearn • Respond to email requests from the public for information • In 2010-11 fiscal year, the CSLP Outreach team responded to almost 1,000 emails. • Outreach Projects • Why Not You! Campaign, Train the Trainer, How to Apply Video • NSLSC Mobile Application, Webinar
Ongoing collaboration with CASFAA • Representing student financial aid administrators throughout Canada, CASFAA is a valued stakeholder organization for the CSLP. • The CSLP continues to engage CASFAA on policy and program developments in a variety of forums: • The National Advisory Group on Student Financial Assistance (NAGSFA) • Service Advisory Council (SAC) • Student Financial Aid Offices (SFAO) Tour
Summary • The CSLP has seen a rise in SFA uptake, along with the successful implementation of the Canada Student Grants Program and the Repayment Assistance Plan. • Building on the achievements of Budget 2008, the measures announced in Budget 2011 continue to provide improved assistance for full-time and part-time students in Canada. • The CSLP is working with provincial and territorial partners to improve the delivery of SFA, both through integration agreements and the roll out of Service Delivery Vision initiatives. • The CSLP also recognizes the importance of student financial aid literacy and has projects underway to enhance knowledge and information availability of CSLP funding. • The CSLP values its partnership with CASFAA and looks forward to continued collaboration and engagement in the future.
Thank you Questions / Comments