Despite Criticism, Education Department Moves Ahead With ‘Gainful Employment’ Rule

In its campaign to block the adoption of a new federal rule measuring how colleges prepare students for "gainful employment," the for-profit-college industry and its allies have attacked the credibility of the Department of Education, questioning the processes it has followed in developing the new regulation and its competency in managing the kind of data that could eventually be used to cut off vital federal aid.

But despite the well-heeled opposition and recent evidence that the message is taking root — fueled in part by notable missteps by the Education Department in calculating data on default rates and by the yet-to-be explained errors of the Government Accountability Office in its widely publicized undercover investigation of several for-profit colleges — a retreat on the rule isn’t looking likely.

That became clearer last week when the department confirmed that it had made final revisions to the proposed gainful-employment rule and sent it on to the White House Office of Management and Budget, the final stop before it is made public in the Federal Register.

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THE CHRONICLE OF HIGHER EDUCATION

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