Welcome to College Confidential!

The leading college-bound community on the web

Sign Up For Free

Join for FREE, and start talking with other members, weighing in on community discussions, and more.

Also, by registering and logging in you'll see fewer ads and pesky welcome messages (like this one!)

As a CC member, you can:

  • Reply to threads, and start your own.
  • Post reviews of your campus visits.
  • Find hundreds of pages of informative articles.
  • Search from over 3 million scholarships.
Please take a moment to read our updated TOS, Privacy Policy, and Forum Rules.

Repayment of Pell Grant

cathmathcathmath Registered User Posts: 3 New Member
My daughter is in her 2nd semester of undergraduate school and recieved a full pell grant. Due to health problems, (mitral valve prolapse, dysautonomia and fibromyalgia) she has exceeded the allowed number of absences in one of her classes. The instructor has dropped her and given her an F. This causes her to be below 12 hours for a full time student.

This is my first kid in college and some people are now telling us that she should withdraw from all of her other classes also to avoid having to pay back the pell grant. Something about withdrawing prior to a particular day in March would keep her from owing back the pell grant?

She has not received a disbursement from the grant but it has been used to pay tuition and buy her books. She really doesn't want the F on her permanent grades since she is usually an A student. She has met with the disability coordinator at her school but he was no help even after providing documentation from her cardiologist.

Any body got any advice or knowledge about paying back a pell grant or the pros and cons of withdrawing versus just taking the F and continuing as a less than full time student?

I've tried looking up info but all I come up with is a VERY confusing formula that I can't figure out.

Post edited by cathmath on

Replies to: Repayment of Pell Grant

  • chaospaladinchaospaladin Registered User Posts: 747 Member
    Check with the school to find out.
  • kelsmomkelsmom Super Moderator Posts: 14,525 Super Moderator
    The formula you refer to is R2T4 (return of title IV funds). Check with your school on how dropping a class will affect your D. Where I work, students do not get any money back if they drop a class after the drop/add period - so we don't take money away if they drop after drop/add. That's our lock date. They've already had to pay. Where it gets sticky for us is if they withdraw from all classes - that's when they might have to pay back some of their federal aid (R2T4) at our school. Dropping classes during the term will sometimes catch up with students if they drop too many, because it might keep them from maintaining satisfactory academic progress & they may lose their eligibility for aid.
  • kelsmomkelsmom Super Moderator Posts: 14,525 Super Moderator
    P.S. I hope your D feels better soon.
  • tango14tango14 Registered User Posts: 1,578 Senior Member
    I'm very disturbed by the fact that a faculty member dropped your D with an F when she has a valid medical excuse for being absent. While the prof may feel that with so many absences it is impossible for your D to pass the course, dropping her/or asking her to drop is one thing. Giving her an F in the process seems very unfair. Did the prof know why she was absent when this happened? I would pursue it with a dept. chair or dean, so that at the very least, your D would have the status changed from F to dropped with cause or whatever terminology the school uses.
  • 2collegewego2collegewego Registered User Posts: 2,708 Senior Member
    I agree with Tango. Your daughter really should have received a Withdrawl of some kind-- not an F. I have one child with health issues and at that one's school, it's the dean who keeps advocating in these situations.
  • 'rentof2'rentof2 Registered User Posts: 4,327 Senior Member
    When I read the original post I wondered how she was doing in her other classes. I mean, if a student produces medical reasons as an explanation for so many absences for one class, but is doing just fine in the others, I can see how the school or the teacher or whomever may need additional information to explain that. I would make sure to provide that and try to get that F off her transcript.
  • cathmathcathmath Registered User Posts: 3 New Member
    Thanks to all of you for your input. The instructor that dropped her and gave her an F is her 1st class of the day. That is when she is at her worst, when she's been in bed all night and tries to get up and get going. So she has had more absences in that class than the others.

    I am planning to set up an appointment to meet with the dean and see what else we can do. The instructor of her class is also the head of that department so meeting with him won't help at all.

    In all of her classes she has managed to turn in all of the assignments and has at least a B average. Even in the one she was dropped from.

    If you have any more advice for us please pass it along.
  • kelsmomkelsmom Super Moderator Posts: 14,525 Super Moderator
    Get your medical excuses ready. Provide all the ammunition you can to show that her issues are real. Ask for their help in getting her into later classes in the future, if possible. Hopefully, you will find some sympathy. Has she visited the school health center? They may be able to help you out, as well. Good luck.
  • cathmathcathmath Registered User Posts: 3 New Member
    Well we talked to her cardiologist and he advised us that the added stress of all of this is making her condition worse. We spoke to the student activities director, and the financial aid office. We have dropped her from her other campus classes and she will have a W in them. She is keeping her online class so that will prevent her from having to pay back the pell grant and we have an appeal set up on Monday with the Academic Dean about the F that she received in the other class. I'm not too happy about that. They know that she is sick but when I asked if I could attend the appeal with her the answer was a swift and absolute NO! So I'm gathering up information for her to take with her concerning her disease and the documentation that we have from the doctor.

    Again thanks for all the advice that ya'll gave and I'll keep you posted.
  • kelsmomkelsmom Super Moderator Posts: 14,525 Super Moderator
    I hope it goes well. Please do let us know what happens. Good luck ---
  • CressidaCressida Registered User Posts: 139 Junior Member
    ^^ What school does your D attend? I think it sounds like one that members should be careful with if they are considering attending.

    There is no excuse for an instructor to give your D an F if she indeed has the condition as you describe. What a jerk. Let's hope the Dean has a backbone.
  • toadstooltoadstool Registered User Posts: 1,145 Senior Member
    Did anyone consider that a student with such serious medical conditions was probably not a good candidate for full-time college in the first place? Don't put the poor kid through another term of this.
  • JayneDohJayneDoh Registered User Posts: 1 New Member
    When I was at university I had to drop one of my classes because of a bad case of bronchitis. I was too sick to deal with jumping through the bureaucratic hoops at the time and was stuck with an "F" and it is on my transcript to this day. I think it is horrible that your daughter is not given proper consideration and find it odd that the school is being resistant to you being in attendance for her meetings. I would think that if she is you child and dependent that you have the right to be there if it is also what she wishes.

    You should pursue this issue if you weren't able to resolve it at the university level. Maybe take it on yourself without involving your daughter directly so she isn't subjected to any stressors associated dealing with bureaucracy. I do believe that are are civil liberties and codes set forth for all accredited higher education institutions-definitely for ones that are accepted on the fafsa. Here is a good place to start:

    Know Your Rights

    I have found it is often good to contact them initially via email so you have a physical record of it. You could also let the university know beforehand that you plan to contact The U.S. Department of Education regarding this matter. Even ask them who you should list for the university rep or contact. Sometimes that will force their hand to do whatever paperwork was necessary to set things straight. Your daughter should either have a "W" or an "I" and NOT an "F".

    Here is the link to education boards on a state level:

    State Contacts and Information

    You may also want to see if her school has a disability program where she can be give accommodations based on her medical condition.
    Best wishes and Take Care

    In regards to toadstool's comment, even if what you wrote comes from a place of ignorance, your comment was unnecessary and rude. Many health issues are not rigid or invariable. Because of this, it is hard to predict how a person's physical response will be to certain stimuli and the depth of the effects until they are exposed to it. Beyond the initial response it will take some time for adjustment and evaluation to determine 100% if the feasibility. I believe the mother mentioned about the online classes-that says to me that they have already been exploring options to work around some of the potential roadblocks. I think that it is very admirable that this girl is still pursuing academics despite her health issues. The mother is obviously smart and supportive, they have a doctor involved, so how about letting THEM decide if she is healthy enough to go to school and not you, toadstool.
This discussion has been closed.