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REGucation

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Clarifying the status of Gainful Employment and Borrower Defense to Repayment

Aaron Lacey June 20, 2017
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Last Friday, the Department of Education published two separate notices in the Federal Register impacting two significant and controversial rules: Gainful Employment and Borrower Defense to Repayment. Here we provide some clarifying information on these announcements in a Q&A format. READ MORE

Recordings now available for final Borrower Defense Rule webinars

Aaron Lacey January 6, 2017
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For anyone who missed our exclusive series of webinars on the final Borrower Defense Rule, or wanted to share them with their colleagues, the recordings and PowerPoint slides are now all available (at no cost). READ MORE

Thompson Coburn hosts webinar series on Department of Education’s final Borrower Defense Rule

Aaron Lacey November 22, 2016
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To help institutions understand the final borrower defense rule and its implications, Thompson Coburn’s Higher Education Team is offering a series of four in-depth, 90-minute webinars, each focused on a different aspect of the regulatory package. READ MORE

Make college great again: Higher education in the Trump era

Christopher Murray Ken Salomon November 16, 2016
White House

Candidate Trump had little to say on higher education policy during the primary and general elections. What should the nation’s institutions of higher education — and the students they serve — expect during the Trump presidency? READ MORE

Title IX and due process: ED tells Wesley that accused student not treated fairly

Aaron Lacey November 2, 2016
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In a rare move, the Department of Education announced on October 12, 2016, its determination that Wesley College in Delaware had violated Title IX by failing to provide appropriate procedural protections to a student accused of sexual misconduct. READ MORE

ED’s new rules for teacher preparation programs

Aaron Lacey October 28, 2016
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On October 12, 2016, the U.S. Department of Education issued its long-awaited final rule regarding teacher preparation programs. After nearly five years and a fair amount of compromise, the final regulation has garnered some praise, but leaves many dissatisfied. READ MORE

ED terminates recognition of ACICS: Next steps

Aaron Lacey September 23, 2016
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Though this decision has most immediate and significant importance for the institutions presently accredited by ACICS, institutions throughout higher education may also be touched by this decision, should the thousands of students and employees of ACICS-accredited institutions ultimately be displaced. READ MORE

ED issues proposed rules for higher ed distance learning programs

Aaron Lacey September 13, 2016
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The proposed rules provide new and potentially onerous requirements for state authorization of online or distance learning programs, along with new requirements for state authorization of branch locations in foreign countries. READ MORE

New webinar series: Unraveling the proposed Borrower Defense Rule

Aaron Lacey Jeff Fink August 24, 2016
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On June 16, 2016, the U.S. Department of Education released its proposed “borrower defense” rule, a sweeping and complex set of regulatory proposals with significance for all institutions of higher education. To help institutions understand the proposed rule and its implications, Thompson Coburn’s Higher Education Team is offering a series of in-depth webinars, each focused on a different aspect of the regulatory package. READ MORE

A look at the legal issues in the transgender bathrooms debate

Aaron Lacey August 5, 2016
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While athletics, record maintenance, field trips, and other such concerns continue to be part of the broader discussion about Title IX and transgender individuals on campus, it is undeniable that one issue has taken center stage: bathrooms. With this in mind, we offer in this post an overview of the legal issues underlying the public debate. READ MORE

Reviewing your GE Completers List: A practical approach

Aaron Lacey July 14, 2016
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Thompson Coburn higher education attorney Aaron Lacey recently wrote a step-by-step guide for Career Education Review titled, “Evaluating Your GE Completers List: A Practical Approach.” READ MORE

Department of Education’s best practices for transgender students deserve careful attention

Aaron Lacey May 16, 2016
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In recent months, the treatment of transgender individuals on campus has come to a head, driven in large part by the stand-off between North Carolina and the federal government over the State’s recent law banning transgender individuals from using restrooms in state facilities based on their gender identity. READ MORE

Gainful employment webinar recordings now available

Aaron Lacey April 12, 2016
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If you missed a session of our “Navigating Gainful Employment” webinar series, would like to view a session a second time, or would like to share the information with other members of your team, the recordings of all five webinars are now available free and on demand. READ MORE

Why the GE regs apply to some programs and not others

Aaron Lacey October 19, 2015
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Whether a program is covered by the gainful employment regulations turns on whether it qualifies as a Title IV eligible program by fitting into a category of “eligible program” that includes the gainful employment language. READ MORE

Caitlyn on campus: Title IX and the transgender community

Aaron Lacey July 31, 2015
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As is always the case when developing new policies based on emerging law and guidance (a common occurrence in contemporary higher education), questions remain regarding the practical application of such guidance, and how it should be implemented when in conflict with guidance issued by other organizations. READ MORE

Gainful employment reporting: Institutional debt and unpaid charges

Aaron Lacey July 10, 2015
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The new rules require institutions to report a wide range of data to the Department for each student who was enrolled in one (or more) of the institution’s GE programs during a designated period. READ MORE

Rethinking the regulation of competency-based education

Aaron Lacey May 18, 2015
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Despite the considerable potential associated with these innovative offerings, competency-based education programs face “regulatory barriers that not only fail to encourage competency-based learning but in fact impede its progress.” READ MORE

New Department of Education guidance for Title IX coordinators deserves a look

Aaron Lacey May 6, 2015
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The new guidance advises institutions on the independence of the Title IX coordinator position, the allocation of adequate resources and training to Title IX compliance staff, and the core functions of the coordinator role. READ MORE

Reporting gainful employment data to DOE: Time to get started

Aaron Lacey February 16, 2015
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The new rules, which become effective July 1, 2015, include reporting, disclosure, and certification requirements, as well as new debt-to-earnings metrics designed to assess whether a program offers a reasonable return on investment. READ MORE

How to project gainful employment rates – Part 5

Aaron Lacey December 9, 2014
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Because this SSA data is not (and presumably will not be) made available to the public, for each GE Program, you will have to develop a proxy for the SSA earnings information. READ MORE

How to project gainful employment rates – Part 2

Aaron Lacey November 24, 2014
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It’s not possible to project with absolute certainty whether a GE program will produce satisfactory rates. With a few educated assumptions, however, institutions should be able to project which programs will pass easily, which will be close, and which will likely fail. READ MORE

How to project gainful employment rates - Part 1

Aaron Lacey November 19, 2014
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While the GE regulatory framework includes reporting, disclosure, and certification requirements, it most prominently features two metrics, each ultimately intended to assess whether a program offers a reasonable return on investment: (1) the Annual Earnings Rate, and (2) the Discretionary Income Rate. READ MORE

Critical first steps when preparing for a U.S. Department of Education program review

Aaron Lacey October 23, 2014
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If the initial call with the Department goes as it should, following the call, your institution will have a good sense regarding the nature of the review, the locations included, the review period, and the dates for the onsite visit. READ MORE

The impact of new gainful employment regulations on… Harvard?

Aaron Lacey October 9, 2014
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The proposed rules would expand student disclosure requirements significantly, by some measures tripling the information that must be reported to the Department for each GE program and disclosed on the school’s website, in pre-enrollment disclosures, and in related marketing materials. READ MORE

Five steps to improve your Annual Security Report notice and distribution

Aaron Lacey September 16, 2014
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We thought we would take a moment to discuss the notice and distribution requirements relating to the Annual Security Report (ASR) and Annual Fire Safety Report (AFSR), and to suggest some best practices for ensuring that these requirements are satisfied year-over-year, as efficiently as possible. READ MORE

Clery Act: 5 points to remember when crunching Clery statistics this year

Aaron Lacey August 25, 2014
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The U.S. Department of Education has directed institutions to make a good-faith effort to gather and publish the new crime statistics in this year’s Annual Security Report, with the understanding that schools will be required to report the new statistics to the Department in 2015. With this directive in mind, we’ve set out below five important points to keep in mind when crunching the numbers this fall. READ MORE

Managing the announcement of a Department of Education Program Review

Aaron Lacey August 18, 2014
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Postsecondary institutions face very real challenges on a daily basis, and have little free time to spend contemplating hypothetical audits. Unfortunately, as a result, most administrators are ill-prepared to receive “the call” when it does occur. READ MORE

Can colleges reward students and alumni for referring new students?

Aaron Lacey August 11, 2014
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One of the more common questions we receive in our higher education practice concerns whether an institution may offer a student or alumni referral program without running afoul of federal law. Or, more specifically, whether such a program violates the incentive compensation regulations enforced by the U.S. Department of Education. READ MORE

Welcome to REGucation

Aaron Lacey August 10, 2014
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Welcome to REGucation, the higher education blog that strives, through practical advice and insight, to help the higher education community manage a fast-changing and increasingly complex regulatory environment. READ MORE