For-profit colleges

Kaplan CEO's book takes on higher ed's incentive system

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Andrew S. Rosen, Kaplan's CEO, takes on the traditional view of college with his debut book, arguing that higher education needs a "reboot" to meet America's goals.

Community college enrollment growth ends

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Community college enrollment drops slightly, but two-year institutions remain crowded after years of record growth.

Texas business group's billboard campaign on completion rates

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Texas Association of Business goes after community college graduation rates with a campaign that was influenced by Complete College America.

For-profits lag behind other colleges in student outcomes

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New research attempts to better compare the performance of for-profit colleges with nonprofits by controlling for differences in student populations, with largely negative results for the industry.

Group releases draft quality standards for competency-based education

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Group of colleges releases voluntarily standards for competency-based education, which Education Department official says could help prevent the rise of bad actors.

DeVry settles job placement claims with U.S. Education Department

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Settlement between for-profit university and Education Department resolves charges over unsubstantiated advertising about job placement, but Federal Trade Commission lawsuit over same claims remains.

Hundreds of colleges, many for-profits, seek a new accreditor

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National accreditor ACCSC gets inquiries from nearly 300 colleges overseen by ACICS, most of them for-profits. Critics of accreditors will be watching as the agency reviews the flood of applications.

DeVry University plans to adopt financial reform favored by for-profit critics

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By tackling the controversial 90-10 rule -- and lowering it for its institutions -- DeVry Education Group is looking to assert its place as a leader in the for-profit sector.

GOP muted in response to for-profit crackdown

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As the Obama administration pushes tougher regulation, the sector is receiving little public backing from traditional allies.

BREAKING: All ITT Campuses Will Close

All ITT Tech campuses will be shut down, its parent company announced today.

"It is with profound regret that we must report that ITT Educational Services Inc. will discontinue academic operations at all of its ITT Technical Institutes permanently after approximately 50 years of continuous service. With what we believe is a complete disregard by the U.S. Department of Education for due process to the company, hundreds of thousands of current students and alumni and more than 8,000 employees will be negatively affected," said a statement from the company.

Last month, the U.S. Department of Education prohibited ITT Educational Services, the parent company of ITT Technical Institutes, from enrolling new students who use federal financial aid. At the time, U.S. Education Secretary John B. King Jr. said that "looking at all of the risk factors, it's clear we need to increase financial protection, and it wouldn't be responsible or in the best interest of students to allow ITT to continue enrolling new students who rely on federal student aid funds."

A few days later, the California Department of Consumer Affairs' Bureau for Private Postsecondary Education issued an emergency decision demanding ITT Educational Services stop accepting new students at its 15 California locations.

Since then, ITT Technical Institute posted a new landing page on its website that states, "We are not enrolling new students." The website also says credits earned by current students are "unlikely to transfer."

The apparent demise of ITT has had students scrambling and trying to figure out their options. The chain has about 45,000 students at 130 campuses.

In blocking new students from enrolling, the Education Department cited the actions of ITT's accreditor, the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools, which determined that ITT "is not in compliance and is unlikely to become in compliance with [ACICS] accreditation criteria." According to the department, ACICS questioned ITT's compliance with standards such as financial stability, management, record keeping, admissions, recruitment standards, retention, job placement and institutional integrity, in an Aug. 17 letter sent to the department.

Critics of for-profit higher education have praised the Education Department's stance. U.S. Senator Dick Durbin, at the time of the Education Department action, compared ITT to the Corinthian chain, which collapsed amid federal and state scrutiny. “For too long, ITT Tech and its executives have gotten rich off taxpayers while misleading and taking advantage of their students with Corinthian-style deceptive and abusive practices,” said Durbin. “Today, the Department of Education announced strong action to help prevent additional students from being harmed and more taxpayer dollars from being wasted on this company faltering under the weight of its own wrongdoing. I strongly commend Secretary King and the department. Students should be warned: ITT Tech is not a smart choice for your educational future.”

But ITT's statement today cited criticism of the department, such as a Wall Street Journal editorial that called the agency's action "a for-profit execution" that demonstrated "how to kill a company without proving a single allegation."

In a note to ITT students on the Education Department's website today, Secretary King sought to lay blame for the closure on ITT, not the department. "The school’s decisions have put its students and millions of dollars in taxpayer-funded federal student aid at risk," King wrote. "Ultimately, we made a difficult choice to pursue additional oversight in order to protect you, other students, and taxpayers from potentially worse educational and financial damage in the future if ITT was allowed to continue operating without increased oversight and assurances to better serve students."

King informed students that they have the option of seeking to have their federal loans discharged or of transferring and continuing their educations elsewhere. "Restarting or continuing your education at a high-quality, reputable institution may feel like a setback today, but odds are it will pay off in the long run," he wrote.

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