Skip to main content

Student Loan Repayment Program

Student Loan Repayment Graphic

The Michigan Department of Education is excited to announce the Student Loan Repayment Program grant for districts and intermediate districts. This program serves as an effort to increase the retention of teachers, including those in critical shortage areas, aligning with goal 7 of Michigan's Top 10 Strategic Education Plan. A district or intermediate district that applies for funding under this section shall use the funding only to implement a student loan repayment program.

Frequently Asked Questions

Full Legislative Language

Application Timeline

  • Applications open in GEMS/MARS: Thursday, February 29, 2024
  • Applications due: Thursday, April 11, 2024, 11:59 p.m.

In order to prepare for the application when it opens, intermediate school districts (ISDs) and local education agencies (LEAs), both traditional public school districts and public school academies (PSAs), can use the downloadable Word application template to begin the process of collecting information on their eligible participants.

NEW! The Student Loan Repayment Program Application Webinar will be hosted by the Office of Educator Excellence on Tuesday, March 12, 2024, at 11 AM to 12:00 PM, with time set aside for a brief Q&A session. Webinar participants must use the Zoom registration link for the session with a correct e-mail address; the webinar link will be automatically sent to that address. Please also ensure that your Zoom application or client program is up to date before the webinar begins. 

Applicant Eligibility

IMPORTANT: Individual district staff members interested in this opportunity are not eligible to apply for this grant.

Only Intermediate school districts (ISDs) and local education agencies (LEAs), both traditional public school districts and public school academies (PSAs), are eligible to complete the application on behalf of their district staff members.

ISDs may apply on behalf of the districts in their service area pursuant to their agreements with those districts.

NEW RESOURCE: 27k Eligibility Checklist

Click on the image to the left to access a checklist that will help you determine participant eligibility. Use this resource in addition to the information included below to guide you in identifying participants for the Student Loan Repayment Program at the time of application.
27k Eligibility Checklist
  • Applicants must maintain documentation demonstrating the following eligibility criteria for each participating district staff member:

    • The district staff member must owe federal student loans.
    • The district staff member must be enrolled in the Public Service Loan Forgiveness program, pursuant to federal law, and is in a payment plan that makes eligible payments toward federal public service loan forgiveness.
    • The district staff member must be enrolled in an income-driven repayment plan. The district staff member may be exempt from this requirement if their loan is not eligible for income-driven repayment.
    • The district staff member must currently work 32 hours or more per week at a district or intermediate district in a role in which the individual works directly with pre-K to 12 students, including but not limited to educators, counselors, social workers, psychologists, reading specialists, librarians, and school administrators who work directly with students.

    For more information about PSLF, qualifying loans, and repayment plans, visit the Public Service Loan Forgiveness webpage.

    Qualifying Loans and Repayment Plans
    Loans received under the William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan Program that qualify for PSLF
     Payment plans that make eligible payments toward PSLF
    • Direct Subsidized Loans
    • Direct Unsubsidized Loans
    • Direct PLUS Loans
    • Direct Consolidation Loans
    • Income-Contingent Repayment (ICR) Plan
    • Income-Based Repayment (IBR) Plan
    • Pay As You Earn (PAYE) Repayment Plan
    • Saving on a Valuable Education (SAVE) Plan—formerly the REPAYE Plan
    • 10 Standard Repayment Plan

     

    Applicants must implement the following as part of the program:

    • Each eligible district staff member shall receive up to $200.00 per month, or if the eligible district staff member is employed in a district or intermediate district that is assigned to band 6* in the opportunity index, up to $400.00 per month, for the duration of the program or the total amount of the eligible district staff member’s monthly federal student loan payment or whichever is less. *Band 6 in the opportunity index means at least 85% of pupils in the district are economically disadvantaged. See below for more information.
    • Payments to eligible district staff members must be made in equal amounts monthly.
    • Payments to an eligible district staff member by districts or intermediate districts must be made for no more than 10 years or until the eligible participant's federal student loan is paid off, or whichever occurs earlier.
    • Eligible district staff members must only receive funding through the program if the eligible participant continues to meet the criteria of an eligible district staff member.
    • Develop a procedure to require eligible district staff members to:
      • report annually, and certify to the district or intermediate district that they made payments toward their eligible federal student loan with the funding received through this program
      • if the district staff member leaves the program, they need to certify to the district or intermediate district, on the date they leave the program that they made payments toward their eligible federal student loan with the funding received through this program
      • certify to the district or intermediate district any increases or decreases in their monthly payment toward the eligible federal student loan

     

  • District Staff Member Eligibility

    The district staff member must currently work 32 hours or more per week at a district or intermediate district in a role in which the individual works directly with pre-K to 12 students.

    • Examples of these eligible participants include but are not limited to the following:
      • educators
      • counselors
      • social workers
      • psychologists
      • reading specialists
      • librarians
      • school administrators who work directly with students in a district or intermediate district 
      The district staff member must be currently enrolled in the federal public service loan forgiveness program and are under, pursuant to federal law, a payment plan that makes eligible payments toward federal public service loan forgiveness.

    For more information about PSLF, qualifying loans, and repayment plans, visit the Public Service Loan Forgiveness webpage.

    Qualifying Loans and Repayment Plans
    Loans received under the William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan Program that qualify for PSLF
    Payment plans that make eligible payments toward PSLF
    • Direct Subsidized Loans
    • Direct Unsubsidized Loans
    • Direct PLUS Loans
    • Direct Consolidation Loans
    • Income-Contingent Repayment (ICR) Plan
    • Income-Based Repayment (IBR) Plan
    • Pay As You Earn (PAYE) Repayment Plan
    • Saving on a Valuable Education (SAVE) Plan—formerly the REPAYE Plan
    • 10 Standard Repayment Plan

    District Staff Member Requirements

    • Report annually, and certify to the district or intermediate district that payments toward eligible federal student loan(s) were made with the funding received through the Student Loan Repayment Program
    • District staff members who leave the program, must certify to the district or intermediate district, on the date they leave the program that they made payments toward their eligible federal student loan with the funding received through this program
    • The district staff member must certify to the district or intermediate district any increase or decrease in their monthly payment toward their eligible federal student loan

    Information on Band 6 of the Opportunity Index

    • Information related to districts’ Opportunity Index Score is publicly available on the Department’s State Aid Payment Information page
    • Downloading the spreadsheet with the “2023-24 At Risk Estimates” link. 
    • Opportunity Index (OI) Scores are determined based on districts’ prior year fall ED count. 
    • The spreadsheet includes the calculation process used to establish each district’s OIS in Column F. 
    • Districts with OI Scores of 85 or higher are in Band 6. 
    • The second tab of the spreadsheet includes sample calculations to provide additional information regarding the OI Scores calculation. 

Contact Information

For more information or support, please contact MDE-PME@Michigan.Gov.