Thursday, November 20, 2014


On behalf of SASFAA, we send our prayers to the family, friends, and colleagues of Bill Grizzard of Tennessee.  The below message was sent to the SASFAA listserv on 11/20/2014.
It is with a heavy heart that I share the news of the passing of our friend and colleague, Bill Grizzard.  Bill was a long-time marketing representative for Regions Bank.  He passed away suddenly yesterday of a massive heart attack at his home.  Arrangements are currently incomplete.  We will share arrangements when they are completed, along with the address to mail your condolences. 
Please remember Bill’s family in your prayers.  He is survived by his daughter, Jenny, two sons, Chris and Patrick, and his grandson, Elijah.
May the happy memories of Bill bring us comfort and peace during this especially difficult time.

Nathan Basford, President
SASFAA 2014-2015

Update 11/20/2014 - 10:50pm - The obituary is now available.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Legislative Relations Committee - Education in the New Congress

Anticipated Chair of the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee Interview

Q&A: Lamar Alexander On Education In The New Congress
"Higher education, preschool funding, the Common Core and the future of No Child Left Behind are just a few of the education policies that will be in play under the new Republican-controlled Congress. How will these things change? We called Sen. Lamar Alexander to ask," NPR reports.

"The Tennessee Republican is expected to become chairman of the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee. There, he'll preside over the Republicans' education agenda, an issue he's been deeply engaged with for decades as a governor, presidential candidate, university president and U.S. education secretary."

When asked about his higher education agenda, Alexander said, "The cost of higher education is more affordable than people think. At a community college, average tuition is $3,600. At a four-year public institution, it's $8[,000] to $9,000. Many students can get a Pell Grant they don't have to pay back, up to $5,000. We lend $100 billion every year in student loans at an interest rate of about 4 percent to people with no credit history. Tennessee is the first state to say two years of community college is free. I expect more states to do that.
I'm [also] working with [Colorado Democratic] Sen. Michael Bennet to take the 108-question student-aid application form, known as FAFSA, and reduce it to two questions: 'What's your family income?' and 'What's your family size?' ... The complexity of the form is discouraging students from attending college. So the greatest barrier to more college graduates is this federal application form. ...

I think ratings are fine, but the U.S. Congress and Department of Education don't have any business trying to develop a rating system for 6,000 higher education institutions in the country. All we'll get is a lot of controversy, a lot of regulations and a lot of confusion. I mean, how is Washington going to compare Nashville Auto-Diesel College [currently known as Lincoln College of Technology] and Harvard? Leave that to accrediting agencies. Have a lot of transparency so students and families can find out all they can about colleges. We have a marketplace of colleges and universities. It has produced the best system of higher education in the world. We don't need the federal government overregulating it."