INSIDE HIGHER ED: Heald College Must Close

Career College Central Summary:

  • The U.S. Department of Education on Tuesday fined Corinthian Colleges nearly $30 million for misrepresenting job placement rates at its Heald College chain, which officials said the troubled for-profit education company must now begin the process of closing.
  • Department officials said the Corinthian-owned Heald, which mostly operates in California, provided inaccurate information about graduates’ job prospects at each of its 12 campuses, with 947 misrepresentations in total.
  • The department ordered Heald to stop enrolling students and begin closing its programs, which currently enroll 9,000 students in California and at smaller locations in Oregon and Hawaii. As long as the company keeps those colleges open, department officials said, students will either be allowed to finish their education or transfer to other institutions.  
  • Education Secretary Arne Duncan said in a statement that the department’s actions “should be a wake-up call for consumers across the country about the abuses that can exist within the for-profit sector.”
  • Ted Mitchell, the under secretary of education, who has been overseeing the dismantling of Corinthian Colleges since last summer and brokered a sale of most of its U.S. campuses to the ECMC Group, called the company’s conduct unacceptable.
  • "Corinthian violated students’ and taxpayers’ trust," he said in a statement. "Their substantial misrepresentations evidence a blatant disregard not just for professional standards, but for students’ futures."
  • Corinthian disputed the government’s findings. Spokesman Joe Hixson said the Education Department's “highly questionable, unsubstantiated allegations” were based on faulty data. He said in an email Tuesday night that the company planned to appeal the department’s decisions.

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