ERIC Number: ED445134
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1998-Apr
Reference Count: N/A
Welfare Reform and Postsecondary Education: Research and Policy Update. TANF Requirements Limit Welfare Recipients' Educational Opportunities.
IWPR Welfare Reform Network News, v2 n1 Apr 1998
The Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) Program work requirements, part of the 1996 Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act (PRWORA) drastically limit women's opportunities to participate in postsecondary education programs while receiving TANF funds. Unlike previous laws governing Aid to Families with Dependent Children and education and training programs, TANF does not consider higher education to be "work," requiring a larger proportion of welfare recipients to engage in work activities. This research and policy update provides current information on college enrollment and research on the economic effects of higher education for single mothers and low-income women, discusses state policies and laws as well as proposed federal and state legislation regarding higher education for welfare recipients. A survey by the American Association of Community Colleges has found precipitous declines in college enrollment among welfare recipients. The initial findings of a survey by the Center on Law and Social Policy and the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities are that welfare recipients around the United States are generally unable to count postsecondary education as a work activity, or may do so on a very limited basis. At the national level, policymakers, activists, and advocates are working to amend the PRWORA and other federal laws to improve welfare recipients' access to higher education and necessary support services. A number of advocacy groups have begun to support the access of low-income women to higher education and to offer the support services to complete their programs. Several recommendations are presented based on the materials reviewed for this update. These center on extending the amount of time welfare recipients can receive vocational education training beyond the current 12-month limit and counting class time as work activities. (Contains 20 references.) (SLD)
Publication Type: Collected Works - Serials
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Mott (C.S.) Foundation, Flint, MI.; John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, Chicago, IL.; Joyce Foundation, Chicago, IL.; Annie E. Casey Foundation, Baltimore, MD.
Authoring Institution: Institute for Women's Policy Research, Washington, DC.
Identifiers - Laws, Policies, & Programs: Temporary Assistance for Needy Families