U.S. Sen. Gary Peters (D-Michigan) announced that he has cosponsored bipartisan legislation that would provide relief for veterans whose Post-9/11 GI Bill educational benefits are affected by the permanent closure of for-profit schools.
Recently, the Department of Veterans Affairs found that more than 6,800 veterans using their GI Bill benefits were enrolled nationwide in various programs at for-profit ITT Technical Institute, which operated campuses in Troy, Dearborn and Canton before it suddenly closed all of its schools Sept. 6.
The Department of Veterans Affairs Veterans Education Relief and Restoration Act would reinstate GI Bill entitlement for veterans who lose college credits due to permanent closure of an educational institution.
"We must always take care of our nation's veterans as they return home from service and transition into civilian life, and this includes supporting their educational goals," said Peters, a former lieutenant commander in the Navy Reserve. "I am proud to cosponsor this common-sense legislation that ensures veterans pursuing higher education can continue to use the benefits they have earned through their service even if the school they attend closes through no fault of their own."
"ITT Technical Institute.jpg"Peters said for-profit schools recruit aggressively among servicemenbers and veterans.
Although veterans typically receive up to 36 months of educational benefits through the Post-9/11 GI Bill, the VA currently cannot fully restore a veteran's benefits if the school they attend permanently closes.
This legislation would:
Restore entitlement for individuals pursuing a program of education with veterans' educational assistance and failed to receive credit, or lost training time, toward degree completion or certification as a result of the permanent closure of the educational institution.
Continue monthly educational payments, including GI Bill housing stipends, through the end of the term or semester in which the school closes, or up to four months from the date of school closure, without charging against an individual's GI Bill entitlement.