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(Grants) Subject: Operational Guidance - COD System Changes to Remove Processing for Two Pell Grants in One Award Year

Posted Date:May 10, 2011

Author: William Leith, Service Director, Program Management, Federal Student Aid

Subject: Operational Guidance - COD System Changes to Remove Processing for Two Pell Grants in One Award Year

In Dear Colleague Letter P-11-02, posted to the Information for Financial Aid Professionals (IFAP) Web site on April 27, 2011, the Department of Education provided schools with guidance on the impact of the Department of Defense and Full-Year Continuing Appropriations Act, 2011 on the Federal Pell Grant Program. As described in the Dear Colleague Letter, the provision that provided that an otherwise eligible student could receive more than one Pell Grant in an award year has been repealed.

We have begun the work needed to modify our systems, Web, technical documents, training materials, and publications to reflect the change. In this announcement, we provide schools with high-level information about the impact on the Common Origination and Disbursement (COD) System.

Note: The enacted legislation did not change the 2011-2012 Pell Grant maximum award or maximum eligible expected family contribution (EFC) used to develop the 2011-2012 Payment and Disbursement Schedules. The February schedules remain in effect for the 2011-2012 Award Year.

Impact on the COD System for Processing Two Pell Grants in One Award Year

On May 15, 2011, we plan to implement COD System functionality that changes how a school will use the Additional Eligibility Indicator (AEI) for the 2011-2012 Award Year and forward. Additionally, a school will no longer be able to award or disburse more than 100% of the student’s Scheduled Federal Pell Grant (SFPG).

The <AdditionalEligibilityIndicator> tag will remain in the Common Record. However, if a school submits the AEI tag on 2011-2012 Pell Grant award or maintenance records, the value must be "False". If a school submits the AEI tag with a value of "True," it will receive one of two edits:

  • If the school is set up to receive rejects for incorrect data, the COD System will reject the Pell Grant award with COD Reject Edit 996 (Invalid Value). The school must resubmit with the AEI tag value of "False."

  • If the school is set up to have corrections applied to incorrect data, the COD System will return COD Correcting Edit 995 (Invalid Value; Correction Applied). In this case, the Pell Grant award will be accepted, the AEI value of "True" will be changed to "False." The new value will be returned in the response file and stored on the COD System. The award amount may also be reduced to the student’s SFPG.

The COD System will continue to process a value of "True" or "False" for the AEI for award years 2009-2010 and 2010-2011.

For the 2011-2012 Award Year and forward, the Pell Grant Eligibility Used (EU) for a specific student award at one attended school will be capped at 100%. If the Pell Grant Total Eligibility Used (TEU) for a student, across all schools in an award year exceeds 100%, a Potential Overaward Project (POP) will occur and will need to be resolved by the disbursing schools within 30 days. The COD System POP logic will be modified to disregard the AEI for 2011-2012 and forward.

Note for EDExpress Users: The most recent version of EDExpress 2011-2012 (Release 2.0) currently includes the AEI field in various Pell Grant module functions, such as origination entry and query. In addition, Release 3.0, scheduled for release in mid-June 2011, will continue to include the AEI field. However, EDExpress users should not select the AEI checkbox for any 2011-2012 Pell Grant origination records created in EDExpress 2011-2012 going forward.

In addition, we would like to remind EDExpress users that the Pell Grant payment and disbursement schedules used by the Release 2.0 Packaging and Pell modules are based on the 2010-2011 schedules. Release 3.0 will update the Packaging and Pell Grant modules to use the 2011-2012 Pell Grant payment and disbursement schedules that were posted on February 1, 2011. When Release 3.0 is available in mid-June 2011, we will provide detailed information for users on the IFAP and FSAdownload Web sites. In the meantime, refer to the guidance in the April 19, 2011 electronic announcement when using Release 2.0 to package and originate 2011-2012 Pell Grants.

Clean-up of AEI Value of "True" on Existing 2011-2012 Pell Grant Awards

As noted above, beginning May 15, 2011, a school should no longer send a value of "True" for the AEI. Just prior to the implementation, Federal Student Aid will complete a clean-up project to correct existing 2011-2012 Pell Grant awards that have an AEI of "True." When we take this action, we will communicate directly to those schools impacted by the clean-up.

Impact on the COD Web Site for Processing Two Pell Grants in One Award Year

Beginning May 15, 2011, COD Web site users will not be able to view or access the AEI field on the Create Award or Update Award pages for Pell Grant awards for the 2011-2012 Award Year and forward. If a school has already set the AEI for 2011-2012, the value can only be changed to "False" via a Common Record batch. If a school is not able to change the AEI to "False" via batch, it may contact the COD School Relations Center for assistance.

The Award Detail Information and View Award Information pages will continue to display the AEI field.

Impact to COD Reports

No reports will be modified with the implementation of this change to the AEI.

Contact Information

If you have questions regarding the changes to the AEI field in the COD System, contact the COD School Relations Center at 800/474-7268 or by e-mail at

If you have questions regarding EDExpress, contact CPS/SAIG Technical Support at 800/330-5947 (TDD/TTY 800/511-5806) or by e-mail at

Last Modified: 05/09/2011