New Department of Education Accreditation Database: A Promising Start, But Clearly a Work in Progress
The Department of Education (ED) has launched a new online database intended to provide current and prospective students, as well as the broader community, with current information on the accreditation status of institutions that participate in the federal student grant and loan programs.
Immigration and Customs Enforcement has announced that its Student and Exchange Visitor Program will no longer allow ACICS schools 18 months to find new accreditors.
Late yesterday afternoon, US District Court Judge Reggie B. Walton denied the request of the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools (ACICS) seeking a preliminary injunction (PI) directing the US Department of Education (ED or the Department) to restore ACICS’s status as a federally recognized accrediting agency.
In an afternoon hearing on December 20, 2016, U.S. District Court Judge Reggie B. Walton denied the motion of the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools (ACICS) seeking a temporary restraining order (TRO) to stay the decision of the U.S. Department of Education (ED or the Department) terminating ACICS’s status as a federally recognized accrediting agency.
On December 12, 2016, US Secretary of Education John King issued his final – and expected – decision denying the appeal filed by the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools (ACICS) and terminated its status as a federally recognized accrediting agency.
On September 22, the Senior Department Official (SDO) for the US Department of Education (ED) released a letter announcing the decision to terminate the recognition of the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools (ACICS) as a gatekeeper for student financial aid programs authorized by Title IV of the Higher Education Act of 1965, as amended (Title IV programs).
On June 23, the National Advisory Committee on Institutional Quality and Integrity (NACIQI) will meet to consider the recommendation of US Department of Education (ED or the Department) staff that the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools (ACICS) be removed from the list of accrediting agencies recognized by the Department as a reliable authority regarding the quality of education or training offered by institutions it accredits.
Earlier this month, the US Department of Education (ED or the Department) announced a number of changes to the so-called “cash management” regulations that govern institutional arrangements with financial account providers and will take effect on July 1, 2016.
The US Department of Education (ED) is preparing for a new rulemaking that is intended to clarify—and very likely expand—the ability of student borrowers to be relieved of the obligation to repay their Federal Direct Loans.
Reacting to ongoing concerns and complaints expressed by members of Congress and others, the accrediting community has been very busy introducing new policies and procedures and refining their respective processes in preparation for the looming reauthorization of the Higher Education Act.
Accreditors have been seen as obstacles to innovation in higher education. In April we issued a Cooley Alert on new WASC guidelines for disaggregating institutional services. Now WASC and DEAC have issued separate policies that appear intended to make it easier for new institutions to come into existence and for the validation of courses provided by unaccredited entities.
The WASC Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC or the Commission) has issued a revision of its policy on agreements between accredited institutions and unaccredited entities, such as service providers.