The Ed Dept revived a financial aid investigative unit. Is it open season on for-profit colleges?

When Joe Biden was still a presidential hopeful, he pledged to step up oversight of the for-profit college industry if he were chosen to lead the nation.  His administration took steps to fulfill that promise this month. The U.S. Department of Education announced it is reviving an enforcement division dismantled under the Trump administration that … Read more

Pennsylvania governor takes aim at sexual violence at state’s colleges

Dive Brief: Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf, a Democrat, is proposing a legislative package designed to curb sexual violence at the state’s colleges.  The plan consists of four bills. One would require all institutions, public and private, to enact policies outlining what acts are considered consensual and how to obtain consent, which is commonly referred to … Read more

Over half of students reported feeling ‘institutional betrayal’ at a university during the pandemic

Dive Brief:  A new study links college student distress with the feeling that their institution failed to protect them from the harms of the coronavirus pandemic.   University of Oregon researchers sought to identify whether student trauma was associated with institutional betrayal related to COVID-19, according to the findings, which were published in PLOS One, … Read more

Competency-based learning can power an equitable recovery

Editor’s Note: Charla Long is executive director of the Competency-Based Education Network and Stacey Clawson is associate vice president of Jobs for the Future. Millions of jobs lost in the pandemic aren’t coming back, and many of those vanished positions were disproportionately held by people of color. As automation and other shifts accelerate, many of … Read more

Amherst College ends legacy admissions

Dive Brief: Amherst College, a highly selective liberal arts institution in Massachusetts, announced Wednesday it is ending the practice of giving children of alumni preference in admissions. The move makes Amherst one of the first top-ranked liberal arts colleges to abandon legacy admissions. These policies have faced new scrutiny in recent years as the sector … Read more

Catherine Lhamon narrowly survives Senate confirmation, will head Ed Dept’s civil rights arm

Dive Brief: Catherine Lhamon, who led the U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights during the Obama administration, will serve in the same role after the Senate narrowly confirmed her in a 51-50 party-line vote Wednesday. Vice President Kamala Harris cast the deciding vote.  Lhamon endured heavy criticism from Republicans. They argued her time … Read more

Pandemic fueled huge online-only enrollment growth, report finds

Dive Brief:  Student enrollment in exclusively distance education saw a significant increase in 2020 due to institutions offering courses virtually that would have normally been offered on-campus, new data suggests.  That’s according to an annual report from the National Council for State Authorization Reciprocity Agreements, or NC-SARA, a distance education oversight organization that covers all … Read more

Bloomfield College appeals for funding to help it stay open beyond current academic year

Dive Brief: Bloomfield College, a small private nonprofit institution in New Jersey founded in 1868, is seeking merger partners and philanthropic support to help it remain open beyond the current academic year. Declining enrollment at the tuition-dependent, undergraduate institution has sapped its revenue and created major financial challenges that are expected to continue into the … Read more

UNC-Chapel Hill can continue using race as admissions factor, court rules

Dive Brief: The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill can continue to incorporate race as a factor in its admissions processes, a federal judge ruled Monday, dismissing an argument by an anti-affirmative action group that the flagship institution discriminated against White and Asian-American applicants. UNC-Chapel Hill narrowly tailors the use of race in admissions, … Read more

NCAA panel recommends nixing standardized testing requirements for athlete eligibility

Dive Brief: An NCAA panel is recommending the association end its requirement that incoming first-year athletes in Division I and Division II sports submit standardized test scores, a move that comes after the organization set up processes to examine racial inequities.  These student-athletes must earn a qualifying SAT or ACT score as part of the … Read more