As online course agreement forms, some worry about state regulation

Complying with state authorization rules would cost $143,000 per college or university, according to a survey.

Colleges that offer online courses across state lines, after fighting a federal rule they call unnecessary and outdated, now are concerned about states’ regulatory power in deciding how schools should comply with existing regulations.

Decision makers from hundreds from online colleges from across the country gathered Oct. 3 at the Presidents’ Forum in Washington, D.C., where campus officials and policy experts parsed the State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement (SARA), pitched as a more reasonable approach to enforcing educational standards for schools that offer web-based classes in many states.

Online education advocates created SARA’s provisions after the federal government’s “state authorization” rules proved so onerous that schools nationwide said the costs of complying with state-by-state rules would force them to withdraw from some states.…Read More

College president: Improved federal rules needed to cut costs, grow online education

Thanks in part to the more than 150 new rules and regulations which emerged from the current version of the HEOA, higher education in America has never been more expensive, Ebersole writes.

While still wrestling with the many initiatives and regulations spawned by the 2007 renewal of the Higher Education and Opportunity Act (HEOA), it is already time for colleges and universities to start worrying about 2013, and how an updated HEOA could expand — or shrink — online education.

Hopefully, Congress and the U.S. Department of Education will see their coming negotiations as an opportunity, and unlike the current version, will use any new legislation to reduce the cost of education, improve access, and provide incentives for innovation.

Thanks in part to the more than 150 new rules and regulations which emerged from the current version of the HEOA, higher education in America has never been more expensive for students in the traditional lecture hall or the online classroom.…Read More

For-profit colleges face more state scrutiny

Lawmakers in at least 17 states have introduced bills on for-profit colleges this year.

Tired of waiting for action from the federal government, several states are moving ahead with plans of their own to tighten regulation of for-profit colleges—including some of the nation’s largest online schools.

Last fall, the federal government started drafting new rules to rein in the recruiting practices of for-profit colleges.

That effort followed a report by the U.S. Government Accountability Office that found the colleges deceived potential students about graduation and job placement rates in the process of getting them to enroll and sign up for state and federal loans.…Read More