Massachusetts Attorney General Is Latest to Probe For-Profit Colleges

The attorney general of Massachusetts is investigating at least three for-profit-college companies for questionable recruiting and related practices, making it the fifth state (Florida, Illinois, Iowa, and Kentucky are the others) where direct investigations into the colleges are known to be under way.

In a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission today, the University of Phoenix revealed itself as the latest target. The Apollo Group, the university’s parent company, said the Massachusetts office was seeking information about the university’s practices there dating back to January 2002.

The company also said it believed Massachusetts was part of a coordinated investigation by several attorneys general. A spokesman for the Massachusetts attorney general said he could not comment on that or whether other colleges were under scrutiny.

Corinthian Colleges Inc. and Kaplan Higher Education had each previously disclosed receiving similar “civil investigative demands” from the Massachusetts attorney general about recruiting practices on two of Corinthian’s Everest Institute campuses, in Brighton and Chelsea, and one Kaplan Career Institute, in Boston.


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