Financial Aid Satisfactory Progress
The Department of Education and Student Financial Assistance Programs require schools
and colleges to develop and apply a consistent standard of academic progress in
determining student eligibility. Foothill College adheres to this regulation by
maintaining a Satisfactory Progress (SP) policy for the awarding of Title IV
funds, state, and institutional financial aid. The college awards assistance based on
demonstrated financial need. In addition, an individual educational plan that
leads to either transfer to a four-year college, or obtain a degree/a certificate
may be required. By applying for financial aid, you are expected to demonstrate the
ability to succeed by being persistent in maintaining enrollment and a minimum
GPA of 2.00.
SP is determined on a district-wide basis. All work
attempted and/or completed at both Foothill and De Anza Colleges is used to determine
SP. In addition, all units attempted at all other colleges; universities and trade
schools may be included to assess the overall time frame (see below).
Students cannot be offered or paid financial aid if they are not in a financial aid eligible
program at Foothill College. Eligible Programs includes AA/AS Degree, Transfer,
and certain Certificate Programs.
Policy change effective for Winter Quarter 2016 and all subsequent quarters
. The minimum standards to maintain “good standing” on financial aid are:
- FULL-TIME STUDENTS (attempting 12 or more units) must earn at least 67% of attempted units each quarter with at least a 2.0 G.P.A. per quarter and cumulative.
- THREE-QUARTER-TIME STUDENTS (attempting 9 – 11.9 units) must earn at least 67% of attempted each quarter with at least a 2.0 G.P.A. per quarter and cumulative.
- HALF-TIME STUDENTS (attempting 6 – 8.9 units) must earn at least 67% of attempted each quarter with at least a 2.0 G.P.A. per quarter and cumulative.
- LESS THAN HALF-TIME STUDENTS (attempting <6 units) must earn at least 67% of attempted each quarter with at least a 2.0 G.P.A. per quarter and cumulative.
Maximum Time Frame
Students are allowed a maximum amount of time to reach their goals in their eligible programs. At Foothill College, students may not exceed 150% of the designated length of an eligible financial aid program (AA/AS degree, Transfer, Eligible Certificate).
- Therefore, if students reach a total attempted units that meets or exceeds the maximum allowable units they will be considered to have reached their maximum time frame and no longer qualify for federal aid.
- All attempted units/work performed at other colleges may be included in determining whether students are over the allowable unit count.
- If applicants approach this excess level and are applying for federal aid, they must submit an appeal that will be reviewed to determine whether this student's time frame should be extended once beyond the normal time.
- An approved appeal puts the student into a continuous Probation period until they complete the approved time frame or do not meet SP in which case they go straight to disqualification.
The purpose of the federal aid programs is to provide students with the opportunity to gain higher education opportunities. When students have had that opportunity, they may not be assisted all the way through to a series of multiple goals if the time they have spent exceeds 150% of the amount of time normally needed to reach this goal.
Financial Aid Warning
If during a quarter a student fails to meet the requirements for either the Completed
Quarterly GPA OR Cumulative GPA that student may be placed on Warning.
Students in warning status are still eligible for financial aid during the quarter if
all other eligibility criteria are being met. A notice will be posted on each student's
MyPortal account and an e-mailed notice will be sent to the student, when an e-mail
address is available, indicating that the Satisfactory Progress (SP) statuses
have been updated.
Example: Mike, who was in good standing after summer school, does NOT meet the SP requirements in fall quarter. Mike would be on warning for winter quarter OR the next quarter that he attends. For that quarter Mike could still be paid financial aid.
Financial Aid Disqualification
If during a quarter when a student is on Warning (no appeal needed) or Probation (an approved appeal is needed),
a student fails to meet the requirements for either the Completed units OR Quarterly GPA OR Cumulative GPA that
student may be placed on Disqualification. Disqualification will be considered a status in which financial aid
is cancelled and financial aid eligibility for the disqualified quarter forward will be cancelled, until SP has
been demonstrated or an appeal approved. A notice will be posted on each student's MyPortal account and an e-mailed
notice will be sent to the student, when an e-mail address is available, indicating that the Satisfactory
Progress statuses have been updated.
Mike was on warning after fall quarter and he returns to attend college in the winter quarter. Mike once again does NOT meet the SP requirements in winter quarter. Mike would be disqualified for spring quarter OR the next quarter that he attends. Mike could keep his BOG Fee Waiver, but may have all other aid cancelled for spring quarter and the following quarters if SP is not met.
Appeals & Probation Status
If the student feels there were extenuating circumstances to explain their disqualified
SP status they have the option to appeal to the Financial Aid Director or their designee.
An appeal may require the student to meet with a counselor, seek tutorial assistance,
correct the difficulties that prevent success, view web-based videos, and/or other
suggested remediation to show increased possibilities of future SP success. An approved
appeal will give the student only 1 quarter of Probation and allow them to receive
financial aid, pending availability at the time of approval.
If a student is in a Disqualified status, they attend a following quarter, and they meet the SP requirements they will be considered to be making SP for the quarter after
showing success. During the quarter after showing SP success the student would be in an eligible status and could be awarded, pending availability at the time of Reinstatement. It is the student’s responsibility to notify the Financial Aid Office of a successful quarter.
Mike was disqualified after winter quarter and he returns to attend college in the spring quarter. Mike finally meets the SP requirements in spring. Mike would be eligible to let the Financial Aid Office know that he reinstated himself. Mike would be eligible for aid the next quarter he attended, pending eligibility and availability at the time of Reinstatement.
Units and GPA calculation
We will depend on Admission and Records (A&R) to properly show units completed and
GPA for our use in determining SP. Grades of “F”, “W”,
“NP”, “IP”, and “I” are not counted as completed units and
thus will be assessed as not completed units when determining SP. Courses taken as P/NP may
have the GPA manually calculated, if not all classes were passed (P). We will follow A&R’s rules
on repeating courses for credit and may be able to pay for retaking a course.
Because below college level courses are often used to get up to college level courses, meaning
there is the intention to be in an eligible academic program, those classes will be used in
determining SP. See grade point calculator
Return of Title IV (R2T4)
Return to Title IV is a process by which the percentage of Title IV aid the student received or should have received
must be determined after a student has completely withdrawn from their courses (100%) and ceased activities on the
campus for any given quarter prior to the 60% completion date. Any financial aid student who completely withdraws
from a quarter will be evaluated to see if one of the following must occur:
- They received aid, but owe some back to the school/Federal Government.
- They received aid (or perhaps they did not), but they should have been eligible to receive additional aid for
the time they did attend classes.
- They received aid (or perhaps they did not), but the amount received was within the range where nothing needed
to be adjusted.
The determination of drop date will be based on official notification by the student (in any form of writing or from a conversation indicating they are withdrawing) or by using the A&R Office's records within the Banner system. At any time a student withdraws from 100% of their classes and ceases official activities on the campus, the percentage completed calculation will be determined, using the Banner system and/or federally provided worksheets. If the records available for their 100% withdrawal date are incomplete or inconclusive, the FAO may use a default point of 50% completion. We will perform the calculation within 30 days of becoming aware that the student completely dropped units. We will follow the federally mandated order of repayment for the Title IV funds when doing the calculations.
Once the R2T4 calculation has been completed, the student will be notified of their repayment responsibility and a debit
amount equal to the student AND institutional liabilities will be placed on the student's account for repayment. Students
will be liable for both portions of the required repayment (Student & Institutional portion). In the cases were a post-withdrawal
disbursement is necessary, the amount owed to the student will be disbursed to their student account and refunded through the
normal method at the next regular disbursement date.
Additionally, for students who owe the college or Department
of Education, holds may be placed on the student's ability to register and order transcripts and a National Student Loan Data
System (NSLDS) hold may be placed after 45 days, preventing further Title IV aid until the debt has been resolved. If repayment
does not happen in a timely fashion the student will be sent to collections by the A&R Office for debts owed to the college along with all debts.
Please contact the Financial Aid Office before withdrawing from all your classes.
Example: Mary is a full time student and received a Pell disbursement of $1,350 for the quarter.
She dropped all her classes during the 5th week of the quarter. After the calculation of Return of Title IV funds,
Mary owes and must repay $234 of the Pell amount.