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COVID-19 Updates: Zoom Alternatives, CARES & HSAs, International Students, Admissions Requirements

By Net Assets posted 04-02-2020 12:13 PM


(From Nonprofit Quarterly and Venable LLP) The video conferencing app Zoom has seen a surge in active daily users, yet experts warn of persistent privacy concerns and data handling policies. Zoom’s privacy policy claims the right to collect information from all Zoom session participants and it shares personal data with third parties. Nonprofit Quarterly has assembled a list of alternative meeting systems that provide encrypted sessions.

Schools making educational content available through Zoom and other online platforms should also consider copyright law. For example, schools may want to review their existing licenses related to distribution of classroom material, which may or may not extend to electronic form, and review the TEACH Act and Fair Use Doctrine to ensure compliance.

More at Nonprofit Quarterly and Venable LLP
Related content: Who Owns That Course? Schools, Teachers and Copyright (Net Assets 2015)

​(From Church Law and Tax) The $2 trillion CARES Act signed into law on Friday, March 27, includes benefits that may apply to religious institutions. Through the Paycheck Protection Program, religious institutions with 500 or fewer employees can apply for federally guaranteed loans to cover payroll and other operating expenses to retain workers and maintain payroll, lease, and utility payments. It is still unclear, however, if the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance program created under the Act applies to employees of religious organizations, who would not traditionally be eligible for unemployment benefits.

More at Church Law and Tax

(From Health Affairs) The CARES Act eliminates a section of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) that limits the use of HSAs to prescribed medicines or drugs, including prescribed over-the-counter medicines and drugs. This change could expand access to over-the-counter medications and could be used to pay for certain feminine hygiene products. This change would apply for amounts paid or expenses incurred after December 31, 2019.

More at Health Affairs

(From Monitor ICEF) In a recent survey of prospective international students, slightly less than 30% of responding students indicated that the pandemic would affect their plans for study abroad. More than four in ten (43%) said they would postpone their studies, with another 38.7% saying they did not yet know how their plans would be affected. Overall the survey suggets that most students still intend to pursue study abroad, even if they have to delay their studies.

More at Monitor ICEF

(From Los Angeles Times) The University of California announced Wednesday that it will eliminate SAT scores and letter grades for required courses for fall 2020 and beyond, following the College Board’s announcement two weeks ago to cancel or postpone many required tests, including the SAT and ACT. The suspension of standardized testing requirements is intended as an accommodation to help alleviate anxiety facing students due to COVID-19.

More at Los Angeles Times


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