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One of the barriers to a diverse and well-prepared educator workforce is the high cost of college and student loan debt. Research has found that higher debt burdens are associated with students avoiding public service jobs, particularly in the education field. These barriers are more acute for people of color interested in entering the teaching profession and hinders their ability to stay in the profession.
To address these barriers, Senator Ben Ray Luján (NM) and Rep. Teresa Leger Fernandez (NM-3) plan to introduce the Loan Forgiveness for Educators Act of 2022, which would reform the Teacher Loan Forgiveness (TLF) Program. Specifically, this bill would update the TLF program to have federal government pay the monthly federal loan bills of educators as they teach in high-need schools or early education programs, and then completely retire any remaining debt after five years of service. If enacted, the legislation will incentivize educators to go into and continue serving in early education programs and high need public schools and diversify the profession.
Urge your Members of Congress to support the Loan Forgiveness for Educators Act today!