VA Delays Rollout of New Enrollment Certification System
In an advocacy win for higher education associations and institutions, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) announced on December 13 that it will postpone the go-live date for its Enrollment Manager system until March 2023.
Enrollment Manger eventually will replace VA-ONCE, the agency’s current online platform for certifying student veteran enrollment at colleges and universities. This announced delay will allow school certifying officials (SCOs) to use VA-ONCE for the Spring 2023 term, ensuring that student veterans receive their education benefits, including their monthly housing allowances, in a timely manner.
VA-ONCE had been scheduled to sunset on January 13, with a two-week blackout period before the original rollout of Enrollment Manager, temporarily preventing SCOs from certifying enrollments during a critical time of the year. NACUBO, along with 38 other higher education associations, sent a letter to the VA on December 8 requesting a delay in the proposed timeline and expressing concerns about the blackout period and the challenges of migrating to a new system in the middle of a peak certification period.
With winter break rapidly approaching, there also were concerns with school certifying officials (SCOs) not being prepared for the transition to Enrollment Manager, as there were limited training opportunities provided during VA’s expedited rollout plan.
In its announcement of the postponement, the VA indicated that it will provide training to SCOs, in addition to its existing 2.5 hours of video training modules. Additionally, the VA has created an Enrollment Manager FAQ and shared an instructional video for creating ID.me or Login.gov accounts, either of which will be required to SCOs to log in to Enrollment Manager.