Priority Open Recommendations:
Department of Education
GAO-19-396SP: Published: Apr 3, 2019. Publicly Released: Apr 10, 2019.
Each year, we make more than 1,000 recommendations to help improve the federal government. We alert department heads to the recommendations where they can save the most money, address issues on our High Risk List, or significantly improve government operations.
This report outlines our 8 priority open recommendations for the Department of Education as of April 2019.
For example, we recommended that Education collaborate with EPA to encourage testing for lead in school drinking water.
Since our previous letter in February 2018, Education has implemented 1 of our priority recommendations.
Graphic showing that this report discusses GAO's 2019 priority recommendations for the Department of Education
What GAO Found
In February 2018, GAO identified 5 priority open recommendations for the Department of Education (Education). Since then, Education has implemented 1 of those recommendations by taking action to strengthen its oversight of the loan rehabilitation process and better ensure that borrowers who complete loan rehabilitation receive benefits, such as removing defaults from their credit reports.
In March 2019, GAO identified 4 additional priority open recommendations for Education, bringing the total number to 8. These recommendations involve two areas: 1) protecting the investment in higher education; and 2) ensuring the well-being and education of the nation's school age children.
Education's continued attention to these issues could lead to significant improvements in government operations.
Why GAO Did This Study
Priority open recommendations are the GAO recommendations that warrant priority attention from heads of key departments or agencies because their implementation could save large amounts of money; improve congressional and/or executive branch decision making on major issues; eliminate mismanagement, fraud, and abuse; or ensure that programs comply with laws and funds are legally spent, among other benefits. Since 2015 GAO has sent letters to selected agencies to highlight the importance of implementing such recommendations.
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