How the government shutdown is affecting education

It’s been a week now, and the government shutdown is still in effect. What does that mean for education? Continue reading to find out…

Special Government Programs

52% of college students reportedly live below the poverty line. Those that rely on certain government programs are now at greater risk for having to drop out to find work to compensate for funding that isn’t being released due to the shutdown.

For example, parent students might find themselves unable to find child support with programs like Special Supplemental Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) shut down. WIC provides money for food, health care, nutrition education, and more for mothers and children up to 5. In Tallahassee, FL., nine Head Start programs were closed. These programs provide preschool care to around 400 children aged 3-4. These children are now out of medical, dental, disability and nutritional services.

In the U.S. Department of Education, the Office for Civil Rights is closed. Considered nonessential, this office has suspended its investigations into Title IX violations, which are on gender equity and handle sexual violence on campuses.

Student Aid Funding

Around two out of three students qualify for Pell Grants. As a vast majority of the staff is furloughed, new applications aren’t being processed. According to the Department of Education, being closed for more than a week could “severely curtail the cash flow” for student aid. Grant programs will likely be delayed even into next year.

Research & Resources

Funding for the research programs students are involved in have been stopped. Many resources that students depend on, like the Library of Congress or museums are closed and unreachable. Government staff members assisting students and schools are also unable to be reached as they aren’t working.

Military academies that rely more on government funding are in some cases being shut down, classes cancelled and experiencing supply shortages.

Now that the shutdown has been in effect for a week (since October 1st), the impact on student aid sources will perhaps become more devastating. Honors Grad U will continue to keep updating on the situation.


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