A change in federal education loan policies has left many students at some of the nation’s historically black colleges and universities struggling to fill a gap in their financial aid and forcing hundreds to leave school, The Washington Post reports. A more rigorous system of credit checks has denied certain loans to parents to help with their children’s undergraduate expenses. The loans are available to all students at all schools. But the changes have had a particularly severe impact on thousands of students at historically black colleges, advocates for those schools say. …  The loans are known as PLUS loans and are available to parents of dependent undergraduate students, as well as graduate students. But a change in 2011 disqualified borrowers with unpaid debts over the past five years that had been referred to collection agencies or ruled as uncollectable. Parents of nearly 15,000 students were denied PLUS loans as of last fall, with only 1,900 cases reversed on appeal, according to the National Association for Equal Opportunity in Higher Education, an umbrella organization for black colleges known as NAFEO.

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