Corporate, Domestic, Education Quality, For-Profit, Investors, Lawsuits, Legislation, Regulatory, Required, University & College - Written by on Friday, March 2, 2012 6:00 - 0 Comments

Heard: California Applies Headlock, Begins Clamp Down On For-Profit Colleges

by domesticat via flickr under creative commons

Inside Higher Ed reports on regulatory sparks shifting from Washington to the 50 states. California, in particular, is starting to crack down on for-profit colleges. Paul Fain writes:

The California Bureau for Private Postsecondary Education, which was created two years ago, has already closed down several for-profits. The agency last week shuttered the Bay Area-based Institute of Medical Education after allegedly finding operational, accreditation and financial problems at the college. And under a new law, dozens of for-profits have loan default rates that are too high to qualify for the primary state aid program. Amid this backdrop the California Student Aid Commission today begins a public hearing on whether the grants should cover all colleges’ online degree programs. The commission says it is in a fact-gathering mode. But for-profits have plenty to worry about in California, given the budget crisis and a proposal by Governor Jerry Brown to cut Cal Grant award levels for students attending for-profits and private colleges. The commission has used aggressive language to describe the goal of the hearing, citing in a press release concerns by some “about the quality of education that students may receive in what many see as an emerging ‘Wild West’ of higher education – a frontier where anything goes and not much is regulated.” There are plenty of sheriffs looking to tame for-profits in California.

In addition to the commission and regulation-minded lawmakers, San Francisco’s city attorney recently requested information from Education Management Corp. about student recruiting practices and job placement reporting at the Art Institutes of San Francisco and seven other Art Institutes in California, according to a corporate filing from the company. The state is also home to tenacious consumer advocates. Among them is Robert Shireman, who oversaw the U.S. Department of Education’s pursuit of for-profits during the gainful employment push and now leads California Competes, a nonprofit focused on higher education and workforce development.

Via Inside Higher Ed

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