The Clinton Herald, Clinton, Iowa

Top News

March 2, 2013

Ashford University placed on notice by HLC

CLINTON — Ashford University has been placed on notice by its accrediting body because of concerns that it is not meeting the accreditor’s criteria, the university’s parent company announced Friday.

Bridgepoint Education announced that on Feb. 27, officials received a letter from Ashford’s accreditor, the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of schools and colleges (HLC), that the university has been placed on notice — a status that indicates a university is pursuing a course of action that, if continued, could lead to it being out of compliance with one or more criteria of accreditation.

The HLC is the accrediting body for a 19-state region, including Iowa.

The HLC Board of Trustees noted Ashford had not demonstrated that it was substantially present in the region as required by a jurisdictional policy the board adopted in June 2012.

Ashford is currently pursuing accreditation from the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC), the regional accrediting body that covers institutions in California where Ashford maintains a substantial administrative and executive presence and where a majority of the for-profit institutions’ students are based.  

Ashford was denied initial accreditation by the WASC in June and officials stated they would reapply for accreditation. According to HLC policy and federal regulations, if another institutional accrediting body takes an adverse or probationary action against an HLC institution, the HLC must begin a review of the institution to determine if sanctions, further action or removal of accreditation were appropriate, according to a disclosure from the HLC.  

In December, Ashford filed a plan to come into compliance immediately with the substantial presence requirement in July 2013 should it not achieve accreditation with WASC, according to a disclosure from the HLC. The HLC Board determined it was in students’ best interest to allow Ashford a limited amount of time to complete the WASC accreditation process before taking further action regarding the substantial presence issue.  

The HLC Commission requested a report from Ashford regarding its accreditation status with the WASC by July 10.

If Ashford is not accredited by the WASC, it will need to host a focused evaluation no later than Oct. 1, to evaluate if it has taken steps to comply with the substantial presence requirement. The evaluation also will examine issues noted by the WASC in denying accreditation.  

In placing Ashford on notice, the HLC’s board also noted in concerns related to the alignment of the university mission with its instructional model, governance of the university independent from its corporate parent, sufficiency of faculty, assessment of student learning and use of data to improve graduation and retention rates, and shared governance structures involving faculty and administration, according to the HLC disclosure.

1
Text Only
Top News
  • Taylorville couple wins $20M lotto jackpot

    A Taylorville couple has celebrated winning a more than $20 million Illinois Lottery drawing.

    Steve and Wilma Durbin were presented with their winning check Thursday afternoon at a grocery store in the central Illinois city where they purchased the ticket. The couple took a lump sum payment of $8.1 million after taxes.

    The Taylorville Breeze-Courier reports the Durbins hit the jackpot in the April 10 Illinois Lotto drawing. That was just two weeks after they were married.

    April 17, 2014

  • Branstad signs school radon bill into law

    The Iowa Department of Education must gather information from schools about whether they are testing for radon gas under a bill Gov. Terry Branstad has signed into law.

    Branstad signed the bill Thursday to require school districts to tell the department about radon testing by the end of this year. The department must then report to the Legislature by January.

    April 17, 2014

  • VIDEO: Boston bomb scare defendant appears in court

    The man accused of carrying a backpack containing a rice cooker near the Boston Marathon finish line on the anniversary of the bombings was arraigned Wednesday. He's being held on $100,000 bail.

    April 17, 2014

  • Lindley, Tom.jpg Golf turns into snooze-fest without celebrities like Tiger and Phil

    The Masters lumbered on last week without two of pro golf's biggest names, Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson, and fans changed the channel. The PGA needs someone with star power if it's going to lure people back to the game.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • The case for separate beds

    The other night I slept on a twin bed in the guest room of the house I share with my husband and our two kids.
    It was the best night's sleep I've had in years.

    April 17, 2014

  • Raw oysters spike U.S. rise in bacterial infections, CDC reports

    Raw oysters, so good with hot sauce, increasingly can carry something even more unsettling to the stomach: A bacteria linked to vomiting, diarrhea and pain.

    April 17, 2014

  • Consumer spending on health care jumps as Affordable Care Act takes hold

    Nancy Beigel has known since September that she would need hernia surgery. She couldn't afford it on her $11,000 yearly income until she became eligible for Medicaid in January through President Barack Obama's signature health care law.

    April 17, 2014

  • Astronomers spot most Earth-like planet yet

    Astronomers have discovered what they say is the most Earth-like planet yet detected — a distant, rocky world that's similar in size to our own and exists in the Goldilocks zone where it's not too hot and not too cold for life.

    The find, announced Thursday, excited planet hunters who have been scouring the Milky Way galaxy for years for potentially habitable places outside our solar system.

    April 17, 2014

  • Defend 'Obamacare' unabashedly, some Democrats say

    With enrollments higher than expected, and costs lower, some Democrats say it's time to stop hiding from the president's health care overhaul, even in this year's toughest Senate elections.

    Republicans practically dare Democrats to embrace "Obamacare," the GOP's favorite target in most congressional campaigns. Yet pro-Democratic activists in Alaska are doing just that, and a number of strategists elsewhere hope it will spread.

    April 17, 2014

  • Search for Chicago site for George Lucas museum

    As Yoda might say: A site for a museum you must find.

    Those are the marching orders Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel is giving a dozen civic leaders as the city searches for a potential location for an interactive museum to house filmmaker George Lucas' collection of art and filmmaking memorabilia.

    April 17, 2014

AP Video