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Accreditation issues: Your opportunity

On June 12, 2019, the Department of Education (DOE) released its proposed rule on accreditation issues. It includes changes to:

  • Allow colleges to outsource programs and add new programs to branch campuses without accreditor approval.
  • Allow substantive changes to be approved by senior department staff rather than through a full accrediting assessment.
  • Extend the amount of time an accreditor or an institution would have to come into compliance with federal standards.

While DOE officials claim that looser standards would encourage innovation, many education advocates believe the changes would open the floodgates to abuses that would harm students and increase costs to taxpayers.

The DOE press release announcing the rule is here, with a link to its proposal. After comments are received, DOE has until November 1 to finalize the rule in order for it to take effect by July 1, 2020. On previous occasions, when many comments have been filed, DOE has missed those deadlines, which results in the rule being delayed for another year.

 

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