On April 12, the U.S. Department of Education announced a new process to proactively identify and assist federal student loan borrowers with disabilities who may be eligible for Total and Permanent Disability (TPD) loan discharge. This effort was called for by President Obama in his Student Aid Bill of Rights, which details measures to make paying for higher education an easier and fairer experience for millions of Americans. Beginning on April 18, 2016, borrowers who were positively identified in the match will receive a customized letter explaining that the borrower is eligible for loan forgiveness and the simple steps needed to receive a discharge. Borrowers are encouraged to visit https://disabilitydischarge.com for more information.
On April 7, the Institute for Educational Leadership hosted a webinar for the DC Youth Workforce Leaders Academy on Supporting Youth with Learning Disabilities. Presented by IEL’s Patricia D. Gill, the webinar provided an overview of learning disabilities, including their impact in the workplace, programmatic approaches such as universal design for learning, and individual approaches such as strategic learning, self-advocacy, and compensatory techniques. This webinar highlighted tools and strategies from the guide, Charting the Course: Supporting the Career Development of Youth with Learning Disabilities. The DC Youth Workforce Leaders Academy is a learning community designed to support the growth and success of staff from Washington, DC based organizations that provide workforce development services to youth ages 16-24. YWLA is supported through funding from the Greater Washington Workforce Development Collaborative, an initiative of the Community Foundation for the National Capital Region. The DC Alliance of Youth Advocates and the Institute for Educational Leadership’s Center for Workforce Development jointly lead the Academy.