After a series of long negotiations that spanned through the weekend and into early this week, the Senate passed the third COVID-19 relief package early Thursday morning by a vote of 96-0. The bill, dubbed the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, represents a compromise between Senate Republicans and Democrats, both of whom have introduced COVID-19 legislation in recent weeks that address student aid.
The $2 trillion bill includes roughly $30 billion in an Education Stabilization Fund, of which about $14 billion will be allocated to higher education, and includes multiple provisions related to student aid.
“The government has shut down the economy for the public health, so the Senate is responsible for taking steps to help families, workers and business who have been hurt by the outbreak of COVID-19,” said Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), chairman of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee, in a statement. “… [T]he bill will help improve our health care capability and provide relief to schools and students who have had their education disrupted.”
The House is expected to approve the measure by the end of the week before heading to the White House where President Donald Trump is expected to sign it into law. Below are the major provisions related to student aid.