The Education Department announced today that it is stripping the powers of one of the nation’s largest accreditors of for-profit schools.
The Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools, or ACICS, has been under scrutiny for continuing to accredit colleges whose students had strikingly poor outcomes.
As ProPublica has reported, schools accredited by the agency on average have the lowest graduation rates in the country and their students have the lowest loan repayment rates.
Accreditors are supposed to ensure college quality, and their seal of approval gives schools access to billions of federal student aid dollars.
As we have also reported, two-thirds of ACICS commissioners — who make the ultimate decisions about accreditation for schools — were executives at for-profit colleges. Many of the commissioners worked at colleges that were under investigation.