National Guard resolves dispute with UT-Arlington
By Jeremy Schwartz | Austin (Texas) American-Statesman | Published: June 21, 2012
The Texas Army National Guard has reached an agreement with the University of Texas at Arlington that will ensure soldiers studying at the school will continue to receive up to $4,500 a year in military tuition assistance. But the National Guard continues to negotiate with the University of Texas at Austin over the billing dispute, which could impact 24 student soldiers.
Last week, the National Guard sent letters to soldiers attending both schools, warning them that the conflict over military tuition assistance could cause them to lose thousands of dollars in aid and perhaps force them to change schools. UT officials said they believed they had several more months to resolve the dispute before students would be affected.
The dispute emerged after the Defense Department said it will no longer approve the tuition assistance for schools that bundle their tuition into a single flat rate, as UT-Austin and UT-Arlington do.
Instead, the Army wants universities to itemize fees so Army officials can approve tuition assistance course by course and ensure that federal money is not used on prohibited expenses, such as books and computers or application and graduation fees.
According to the Texas National Guard’s Education Services Office, UT-Arlington will begin sending itemized bills for its military students. In a message on its website, the office told students it expected to reach an agreement with UT Austin “soon.”
Distributed by MCT Information Services