EDUCATION DIVE: Q3 still not pretty for for-profits, but elections could see tides change

Career College Central Summary:

  • For-profit college operators may have caught a break with the midterm election results and the Obama Administration easing up on certain student loan default rate calculations that will help determine federal aid to colleges. And judging from recent financial results from the publicly traded for-profits, they’re going to need it.
  • In September, the U.S. Department of Education announced tweaks to the default rate calculations that should allow more colleges — and for-profit schools in particular — to maintain access to federal aid than would have under a previously proposed stricter formula.
  • And this month, election results that gave Republicans control of both houses of Congress probably spelled the end of the hopes of reformers to tie financial aid to a Department of Education college ratings system. Also, decreased federal regulation of higher ed in general is expected under Republican legislative leadership, relieving the kind of pressure that, for example, took down Corinthian Colleges.
  • Most of the large, publicly traded for-profit college enrollment numbers are down, though DeVry Education Group is a notable exception. But even among the for-profits with declining enrollments, several chief executive officers are predicting that a rebound is coming soon.

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