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Department of Education OIG

Inconsistent Grantee and Subgrantee Reporting of Education Stabilization Fund Subprograms in the Federal Audit Clearinghouse

The purpose of this flash report is to share with the U.S. Department of Education (Department) observations made by the Office of Inspector General (OIG) concerning grantees and subgrantees inconsistently reporting audit data on Department subprograms, or unique components of a program, to the Federal Audit Clearinghouse (FAC), the designated repository of single audit data. We found that grantees and subgrantees are not consistently reporting expenditures of Education Stabilization Fund (ESF) subprogram awards in the FAC. Specifically, when entering Federal award information into the Data...

Department of Education OIG

Fraud Reporting Requirements for Federal Program Participants and Auditors

This guide summarizes the fraud reporting requirements most relevant to entities receiving pandemic relief funds and auditors of those entities.

Department of Education OIG

Federal Student Aid’s Suspension of Involuntary Collection in Response to the Coronavirus Pandemic

The objective of our review was to evaluate the results of Federal Student Aid’s (FSA) process for suspending involuntary collection and refunding payments involuntarily collected on defaulted Department-held loans in response to the Coronavirus pandemic. We found that FSA suspended administrative wage garnishments and the U.S. Department of Treasury (Treasury) offsets for over 96 percent of the borrowers that FSA collected payments for within 90 days of March 13, 2020, the start of the suspension period. However, as of October 23, 2020, we found that FSA continued to receive administrative...

Department of Education OIG

Risk of Closed Institutions of Higher Education Receiving Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund Grants

The purpose of this report is to share with the U.S. Department of Education (Department) observations made by the Office of Inspector General (OIG) concerning institutions of higher education (IHE) that ceased to provide educational instruction in all programs of study (closed) and received or had access to coronavirus response and relief aid through the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF). We found that 17 IHEs that closed on or before December 31, 2020, applied for and were awarded a total of $4,912,675 of HEERF grants by OPE. Of these 17 IHEs, 14 drew down HEERF funds and 3 did...

Department of Education OIG

Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund Reporting Requirements

The objective of our inspection was to determine (1) whether selected institutions receiving funds under the Institutional Portion of Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF) met public reporting requirements and (2) the reported usage of the Institutional Portion of HEERF by selected institutions. We determined that 81 of the 100 institutions included in our sample complied with Institutional Portion reporting requirements. We were unable to locate Institutional Portion reports anywhere on the websites associated with 19 of the 100 (19 percent) institutions included in our sample.

Department of Education OIG

Assessment of the Department’s Reconstitution Plans Following COVID-19

The objective of our inspection was to assess the U.S. Department of Education’s (Department) plans and procedures for returning employees to the federal office in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, including what existing guidance the Department considered when developing its plans and procedures. We found that the Department generally incorporated available guidance, which was intended to provide for a safe and gradual return to federal offices, in its Workplace Reconstitution Transition Plan (Reconstitution Plan). However, we noted that the Department’s Reconstitution Plan does not...

Department of Education OIG

Challenges for Consideration in Implementing and Overseeing the CARES Act

This management information report provides the Office of Inspector General’s (OIG) perspective on challenges the U.S. Department of Education (Department) may face as it implements and oversees the Coronavirus, Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act. In preparing this report, we reviewed recent audit work performed by OIG and the Government Accountability Office (GAO) as well as OIG’s annual Management Challenges reports. We also reviewed challenges that the Department faced when administering education-related grant programs funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act...