The Education Department's secretary, Arne Duncan, has stated in a letter that the department is taking steps to help parents obtain federal loans if their applications are rejected because of minor problems in their credit history.

Many parents have been turned down in their attempts to obtain a PLUS loan to help their children pay for college because of the federal government's 2011 decision to tightened its screening criteria for lending to parents. This has led to a decrease in enrollment at historically black colleges and universities such as Howard University, Hampton University and others.

As a result, advocates for historically black colleges have pushed for help and change, which is exactly what they might be getting if the loan lending standards are indeed loosened.

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