For-profit colleges will face more regulations in 2011.
This is in response to complaints that a number of Florida for-profit colleges miss-represnted themselves to prospective students in order to drum up business.
The Florida Department of Education has revised its rules on for-profit colleges and now requires that admissions officers and recruiters receive training on fair consumer practices. They will now have to provide with students a variety of information, including cost, terms of payments, financial aid, refund policies, accreditation, transferability of credits and job placement data.
This action was approved in December by the Florida Board of Education in response to aggressive sales tactics from the federal Government Accountability Office.
According to Sam Ferguson, executive director of the Commission for Independent Education, some of the proprietary schools in Florida were delivering less than what they promised students.
Some of the for profit schools have suffered because of the report. Enrollments have fallen. The University of Phoenix and Kaplan University are now defendents in a a class action suit. Kaplan, which has campus in South Florida recently laid off 770 people, 130 in the Miami area. The University of Phoenix laid off 700 people in November.
Florida’s attorney general is now investigating Kaplan and the University of Phoenix and six other schools after receiving consumer complaints about these schools.
Michelle Pore, spokesperson for Kaplan said her institution will have no problem complying with the new regulations.
Harris Miller, president of the Association of Private Sector Colleges and Universities, an industry lobbying group said the organization will try to develop a formula that would increase the professionalism of people working in admissions of for-profit colleges and universities.
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