DES MOINES, Iowa — With the school year ending families are looking ahead. Though things should be mostly set for next year, the main application for federal student aid is getting a makeover for future years.
When it comes out later this year, the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is changing for the 2024-2025 school year.
Drake University Director of Financial Aid Ryan Zantingh said the FAFSA will no longer require families to list their incomes. New laws allow the U.S. Department of Education to access people’s tax returns directly from the IRS.
He said there are several other changes to the FAFSA. Students will be required to declare their parents’ small businesses and family farms.
The expected parent contribution is also changing. Families can no longer divide that number by the number of students they have in college at a given time. They’ll be expected to contribute the full amount for each kid each year.
“The FAFSA is something that is completed annually for students each that they’re enrolled in college,” Zantingh said. “And so there will be some significant differences in, one, how the FAFSA collects information but, two, how that information is used to compute student eligibility.”
The changes won’t affect what students receive during the 2023-2024 school year.
Zantingh said the FAFSA typically comes out Oct. 1. This year it’s not going to be available until December.
He also said Drake has mapped out how FAFSA changes could affect students. Drake expects a 9-percent increase in the number of its students receiving aid due to changes making it easier for people to qualify for Pell Grants.