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Follow Along: Our 2015 Back-to-School Tour

The President and Secretary Duncan host a town hall with high school juniors, seniors, and their parents to discuss college access and affordability.

Today the President is traveling to Des Moines, Iowa, to join Secretary of Education Arne Duncan’s sixth annual Back-to-School bus tour. The President and Secretary Duncan will host a town hall with high school juniors, seniors, and their parents to discuss college access and affordability. 

Off to Iowa.

A photo posted by Pete Souza (@petesouza) on

Tune in here to watch the townhall at 4:40pm EST:

But for the first stop, the President is touring the Iowa State Library.

The President is announcing a new initiative to allow students and families to apply for financial aid earlier – starting in October as the college application process gets underway – rather than in January. Learning about aid eligibility options earlier in the college application process will help students and families understand the true cost of attending college – taking available financial aid into account – and make more informed decisions.

Together with the newly launched College Scorecard – which is redesigned with direct input from students, families, and their advisers – students will have more information to choose the right college than ever before.

Colleges and universities and scholarship organizations have already committed to align their aid timelines with the earlier FAFSA, and nonprofits and advisers have committed to raise awareness about the FAFSA changes and to help students reach 100 percent FAFSA completion. The President will also renew his call on Congress to pass legislation to simplify FAFSA even further by eliminating up 30 questions that are disproportionately burdensome and have little impact on aid eligibility.

Get ready, it's much faster. Can you say it?