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School Certification: Loan Forgiveness Low-Income Program


The program is designed to certify eligible schools which will allow possible teacher loan forgiveness based on poverty rate of schools where teachers are employed and have loans under the Federal Perkins Loan (Perkins)/National Direct Student Loan (NDSL), Federal Family Education Loan (FFEL), and William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan (Direct Loan) programs.

School Eligibility Criteria to be included on the Federal "Qualified Schools Directory":
  • School must be a public or other nonprofit elementary or secondary school. "Elementary school" or "secondary school" means a public or nonprofit private school that provides elementary education or secondary education (k-12 grade only) as determined by state law (or by the U.S. Department of Education if the school is not in a state)
  • Private schools must be registered with The Oregon Department of Education (ODE) per Oregon State Statutes Chapter 45 - Private Schools.
  • School must be in a school district of a public Local Educational Agency (LEA) that is eligible each year for assistance under Title I of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (ESEA). (All LEAs are eligible not just LEAs that get title I grants).
  • The number of children enrolled in a school who are counted under Section 1124(c) of the ESEA (federal definition of poverty) must exceed 30.0 percent of the total enrollment of that school (K-12 enrollment only).
  • Pre-Kindergarten Programs are not eligible to be in the "Qualified Schools Directory" even if in an eligible school.

Process for Determining School Eligibility:

Public and Private Schools that participate in the National School Food Lunch Program:
The ODE Nutrition Office compiles a list of eligible schools once a year based on Free and Reduced Lunch Program Survey data collected each year and the ODE Educational Improvement and Innovation Office compiles a list of Title I eligible school districts each year. Schools on the Nutrition list in districts on the Title 1 list for grades K-12 are eligible to be in the directory. ODE will automatically add eligible schools to the federal "Qualified Schools Directory" once school administrators submit paperwork in every year. This is done in the mid-April timeframe each year.

Private Non-Profit Schools:
The ODE Educational Improvement and Innovation Office registers private schools each year. Registered schools who apply for certification may be eligible if they meet the other criteria. An application packet is located at a link below. Applications will be reviewed for eligibility to be in the "Qualified Schools Directory" and will be initially added to the directory in January each year and others added upon approval after that.

Other Public Elementary and Secondary Schools:
Schools not on Free and Reduced Lunch School list and are on ODE Institution Database public schools list may also be eligible and need to complete applications. Returned applications are reviewed for eligibility to be in the "Qualified Schools Directory" and will be added at the time of the above school groups or upon approval, whichever is earlier.

Once a school is certified program eligible, teachers in the schools can contact their loan provider to understand the necessary steps to determine eligibility for Federal Program loan forgiveness. The Oregon Department of Education DOES NOT work with teachers and should NOT call the department about loan forgiveness.

See links below for additional information


LINKS


Contacts
  • Paulita Pena Email    (503) 947-5697
    Office of the Deputy Superintendent - Office Specialist
  • ode.frontdesk@state.or.us Email   (503) 947-5697 - Contact only for school certification information

PLEASE BE ADVISED THAT THE OREGON DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION (ODE) DOES NOT QUALIFY THE TEACHER FOR THE TEACHER LOAN FORGIVENESS PROGRAM. TEACHERS MUST CONTACT THEIR LENDER(S) IN REGARDS TO FURTHER QUESTIONS DETERMINING THEIR QUALIFICATIONS FOR LOAN FORGIVENESSS.

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