October 14, 2021

Shuttered For-Profit College Was Run By Industry Perennial

When a for-profit college chain abruptly closes, locking out its students and leaving their futures in doubt, the industry is often quick to disavow the dead school as a wayward abuser, an outlier. In reality, though, many of the surviving for-profit college chains use the same predatory playbook as the collapsed ones, and leaders of
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October 8, 2021

Education Department To Revitalize Enforcement Office

Rising to the challenge of protecting America’s students from deceptive predatory colleges, the U.S. Department of Education announced today a major upgrade to its enforcement and investigative operation. Kristen Donoghue, who served as enforcement director at the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau during the Obama administration, was named the Department’s chief enforcement officer, heading a revived
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October 6, 2021

FTC Announces Crackdown on Predatory College Abuses

The Federal Trade Commission this morning announced a new initiative to combat deceptive and unfair practices in the for-profit higher education industry. At a press conference, FTC Commissioner Rohit Chopra and Bureau of Consumer Protection Director Samuel Levine explained that the commission had voted to exercise long-unused powers to warn for-profit colleges against making misrepresentations
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September 7, 2021

NPR Report Highlights Wall Street Journal Role in Smear on Obama Official

A report out today from NPR highlights the pernicious role that the Wall Street Journal has played in spreading false attacks and innuendoes, invented by the for-profit college industry, on former Obama Department of Education official Robert Shireman. The new article, by David Folkenflik, NPR’s media reporter, details misleading aspects of Wall Street Journal reports
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August 27, 2021

Shuttered CEHE College Chain Gets Mixed Appeals Verdict

A panel of the Colorado Court of Appeals has upheld part, but also reversed part, of a trial judge’s $3 million verdict against the predatory college operation Center for Excellence in Higher Education (CEHE), its now-shuttered schools, and its principal executives, Carl Barney and Eric Juhlin. The panel ordered a new trial on claims that
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August 10, 2021

Will Arkansas Become the Latest State U. To Acquire a Predatory College?

The University of Arkansas System board of trustees is meeting Wednesday morning to consider acquiring for-profit Grantham University. The university announced it plans to pay $1 to buy Lenexa, Kansas-based Grantham, an online school with some 4000 students. The Level Playing Field Corp. owns Grantham. UA System President Donald Bobbitt is calling the potential deal
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August 9, 2021

Accreditor SACS Must Explain Its Tolerance of Abuses At Keiser Universities

In a separate post today, I discuss how the Department of Education is at a crossroads in its oversight of accrediting agencies, the private bodies that serve as reviewers of college quality and integrity and gatekeepers for eligibility for federal student grants and loans. Below, in response to a request for public comment related to the
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August 9, 2021

Education Department Hearing Exposes Divisions on Higher Ed Abuses

1. Collegial higher ed and its consequences When I first got involved with higher education issues, about ten years ago, I observed a remarkable division: Congressional investigations and numerous media reports were highlighting blatant deceptions and abuses of students by numerous for-profit colleges. Yet in the rooms where higher education officials gathered — at Department
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