Derek Slap


Derek Slap



April 27, 2023


Today, State Senator Derek Slap (D-West Hartford), Senate Chair of the Higher Education and Employment Advancement Committee, led the State Senate in passage of legislation prohibiting institutions of higher education from withholding student transcripts. If passed by the House and signed by the Governor, this bill would prevent colleges and universities from withholding student transcripts from employers, prospective employers or branches of the military as a means to collect student debt.

Under Senate Bill 922, “An Act Prohibiting An Institution of Higher Education From Withholding Transcripts,” Connecticut higher education institutions would be prevented from refusing administration of current or former student transcripts because of a student’s debt; condition a transcript’s release upon payment of debt; charge a higher fee for providing a transcript because of a student’s debt; or use transcript release as a means of debt collection.

“A ‘transcript hold,’ as it is commonly referred to, holds back job seekers and prevents people from starting or advancing their careers,” said Sen. Slap. “This bill aims to end that practice for good. Why? A student or alum who owes debt is going to need a job to earn money to pay that debt. This bill will make it easier for folks to find work, which will allow them to pay off debt. This educational policy is short-sighted and I am proud we are one step closer to ending it.”

College alums and students seeking new jobs often need to submit academic transcripts to employers; however, some colleges and universities have policies restricting students in debt from accessing transcripts. This can lead to lost career opportunities, negatively impact student and alum finances, and disproportionately impacts low-income students and workers. By ending this policy, the state will prevent alums and students from being constrained in their financial and professional lives due to debt.

According to testimony submitted to the committee by Education Reform Now CT, as of 2022, every higher education institution in Connecticut utilized transcript withholding.

The Consumer Protection Agency prohibited transcript withholding as a practice to recoup student loans in October 2022, but it remains in place for outstanding fees and charges imposed by schools. Eight states – California, Colorado, Illinois, Maine, Minnesota, New York, Ohio and Washington – have passed laws prohibiting or limiting use of transcript holds.

In 2022, similar legislation was introduced and passed on the Senate floor, but was never voted on by the House. The bill passed the Higher Education and Employment Advancement Committee by an 18-4 vote in February.