Edu-ma-ka-tion

After almost 2 decades, I finally won a battle against my technical school, that may sound like eye-tee-tee, and the DOE (Dept of Education).

In a nut shell, I attended said school for a whopping two semesters before dropping out. I dropped out because I was misled by the school and the recruiter on the necessary prerequisites required. The ploy was the class didn’t require 2 years experience yet all of the instructors expected you to have it and taught based on that assumption. I’m smart but I could not overcome a 2 year difference between what was expected of me and what I had. After going thru the process, I was supposed to only be billed for the two semesters.

Fast forward to the end of my loan, I was notified I still owed more. Apparently, the school had billed me for the entire first year, or more to the point,they billed the DOE. I disputed the amount and sent in the documentation showing my attendance and termination. I heard nothing and assumed it was done.

Fast forward again to the mid 90’s, while I’m living in Colorado, I get a collection bill for the outstanding amount plus interest. It’s been almost 10 years atthis point and having survived a bout of being homeless, I could not find my copies of the original records. I call, go thru the process, and request my records from the school. The school first refuses then sends me everything but my attendance dates. I submit everything and once again hear nothing.

Fast forward one more time to earlier this year. I get a new collection notice along with a new bill for interest which is twice the actual amount being billed. I am like, “oh hell naw!” I call and dispute yet again. I get the same run around as before even after they admit they can see all the original documentation notes. Yet, w/o any of the actual copies they are unwilling to proceed. I languish in limbo while attempting to have them contact the school and get my attendance records, since the school will not send them to me.1  A few months go by and I hear nothing. This time I am unwilling to just ignore the problem. I call back and get more excuses. I’m feeling very annoyed and not at all content with this nonsense.

One day, I happened to be digging thru some old papers in an unrelated attempt to clear some clutter and what do I discover? My old documentation. It had somehow survived in the two boxes I managed to keep all these years. Color me surprised. I notify the DOE, get to the proper forms in the mail, fill them out, attach all the documents, school records, etc. The school of course tries to dispute it, but being on their original forms they were unsuccessful.

I was notified today that not only am I no longer expected to pay the outstanding 2 semesters, I am also due a check for just over $500 from an overpayment! Reading between the lines here means that school will have to cough up that money. I’m absolutely tickled.

  1. Having made a dispute, legally the debt – holder has to show proof the debt is valid. []

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