Veterans & Service Members

AACRAO recognizes and honors the sacrifices these men and women have made and its members are proud to assist them and meet their educational needs. Veterans and students on active military duty and their families face special circumstances and challenges.

Changes in federal statute and executive actions have greatly promoted the expansion of services toward veterans and their families. Since the Post-9/11 GI Bill was passed in 2009, close to 1 million veterans, service members, and eligible dependents have taken advantage of the educational benefits available to them. With the passage of more recent legislation, such as the Forever GI Bill in 2017 and the Isakson Roe and THRIVE Acts in 2021, there will be significant changes to military education benefits over the coming years.


Latest Actions

AACRAO recently hosted a webinar to discuss the implementation of veteran legislation passed in December 2020, also known as the Johnny Isakson and David P. Roe Veterans Health Care and Benefits Improvement Act. This law will have a transformative effect on the mission of Education Service to provide ready access to, and timely and accurate delivery of, education benefits to Veterans, Service members, and their families, as well as further enable the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to empower GI Bill beneficiaries to achieve their vocational and career goals.

Other recent legislation introduced in both the House and Senate include important provisions to help ensure veterans can continue to receive their education benefits as well as technical corrections to the legislation passed last year.


Congress Approves COVID-19 Fix for GI Bill and Other VA Benefits

Mar 26, 2020, 08:30 AM
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Summary : Legislation protect GI Bill and other U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs-funded students from a reduction in their housing allowance as classes shifted online because of the coronavirus.
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Over the weekend, the Congress approved and President Trump signed into law legislation designed to protect GI Bill and other U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs-funded students from a reduction in their housing allowance as classes shifted online because of the coronavirus, The Military Times reported.

The bill, S. 3503, would grant the Secretary of the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) the authority to continue to provide VA educational assistance to veterans when an approved program of education at a college or university is converted to an online program due to an emergency or health-related situation. This authority would be available immediately and would extend through December 21, 2020.

The legislation responds to a VA determination that it would be required under the GI Bill statute to reduce students' housing allowance by half and possibly defund and programs that had not been previously approved to offer online education, reported Politico. It also addresses the issue of pass/fail grades and gives the VA flexibility to not impact a student's GI Bill benefits during these times.

AACRAO joined more than 60 other higher education groups to urge Congress to move swiftly to approve the legislation. The letter expresses strong support for the bipartisan legislation.

The VA is preparing additional guidance for schools that have changes in training modalities and operation status due to COVID-19. In order to avoid confusion and the need to make multiple changes to enrollments, the VA is asking that all institutions temporarily refrain from making any adjustments to enrollment certifications if training has changed due to COVID-19. 

Related Links

The Military Times


Michelle Mott
Categories :
  • Advocacy
  • Financial Aid and FAFSA
  • Online and Distance Learning
  • Veterans and Service Members
Tags :
  • covid-19
  • Federal relations
  • gi bill
  • grades
  • Resources for Veterans Administration Certification
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