A student may take courses at more than one school that apply to his or her degree. The school that will grant the degree is the student's "primary" school. All other schools are "secondary" schools.
VA can pay benefits for courses taken at secondary schools. If the student is only enrolled at the secondary school (supplemental enrollment), VA will pay for the credits taken at the secondary school. If the student is enrolled at the primary school and the secondary school at the same time (concurrent enrollment), VA will pay for the combined credit, taking overlapping enrollment dates into account.
If You're the "Primary" School
If a student takes courses elsewhere that satisfy requirements for his or her degree at your school, then you're the primary school and the student is a "Guest Student" at the secondary school. The primary school provides a letter ("primary school letter") addressed to the VA Certifying Official at the secondary school. Keep a copy of the letter in the student's file. The letter should:
- Identify the student (name, as a student at (insert name and facility code of your school) pursuing a (insert name of your student's program).
- State, "The courses listed below satisfy (insert name of program) requirements and will transfer at full value to (insert name of your school)."
- List the courses the student is taking or will take at the secondary school that your school will accept as transfer credit that apply to the student's program.
- State, "(Student) intends to take the above courses at (Secondary School) (Identify term, for example, fall quarter 2010). Please certify the course(s) to VA as the secondary school. VA data and history for both primary and secondary schools will be in VA-ONCE.
Ensure a transcript is obtained from the secondary school and that transfer credit is granted, grade permitting. When a compliance survey is conducted, your records will be reviewed to see if the course applied to the student's program and to see if transfer credit was granted, grade permitting.
If You're the "Secondary" School
If a student takes courses at your school that will apply to a degree the student is pursuing elsewhere, you are the secondary school and the other school is the primary school. The student's primary school will send you a primary school letter. In VA-ONCE:
- Add the student.
- Certify the student as a "Guest Student". VA-ONCE will have you enter the name of the primary school. VA-ONCE will insert "Guest Student" for program and insert "Courses Confirmed To Be Applied To A Degree Program At (Name of primary school you entered)" in remarks.
Only certify courses listed in the primary school letter. Remember tuition and fees if the student is less than ½-time, active duty, or Chapter 33. Secondary schools must report all changes in enrollment for guest students. Amend, adjust, and terminate as you would for any VA student. VA data and history for both primary and secondary schools will be in VA-ONCE. The data and history can be seen by both the primary and the secondary school.
Sample Primary School Letter (Suggested Format)
NOTE: An e-mail containing the required information can be accepted in lieu of a formal letter. The e-mail message simply needs to convey the facts outlined in the primary school instructions and a copy must be kept in the student's file by the primary school.
NAME OF PRIMARY SCHOOL
ADDRESS OF PRIMARY SCHOOL
NAME OF SECONDARY SCHOOL
ADDRESS OF SECONDARY SCHOOL
(Student's Name [Claim Number]) is a chapter (e.g., 30) student at (Name of School [facility code]) pursuing a (Name of Program, e.g. B.S. History degree).
The course(s) listed below satisfy (Name of Program) requirements and will transfer at full value to (Name of School).
List course(s) by title and number
Student intends to take the above course(s) at (Secondary School) (Identify term, e.g., spring term 2004) as a guest student. Please certify the courses to VA as the secondary school.
SIGNED BY THE CERTIFYING OFFICIAL