Subcommittee on Economic and Consumer Policy Held Hearing on For-Profit College Oversight and Student Debt

May 23, 2019
Press Release

Washington, D.C. (May 23, 2019)—This week, the Subcommittee on Economic and Consumer Policy held a hearing on “Examining For-Profit College Oversight and Student Debt.”

 

TAKEAWAYS

 

  • Department of Education Principal Deputy Under Secretary Diane Auer Jones misled the Subcommittee about her decision to reinstate recognition of ACICS, a company which repeatedly accredited academically and financially weak for-profit schools.  

 

  • Ms. Jones stated she does not regret disregarding the Department staff reports which found that ACICS failed 57 of 93 recognition standards when she reinstated ACICS as a recognized accreditor.

 

  • Ms. Jones misleadingly claimed that pending litigation prevents the Department from adjudicating these claims when, in reality, an October 2018 federal court order requires the Department to adjudicate these claims under the 2016 Borrower Defense regulations.

 

  • A confidential source at recently collapsed education organization Dream Center alleged that Ms. Jones was aware of and directed Dream Center officials to misrepresent their unaccredited status to students on Illinois Institute of Art’s campuses.

 

  • Maryland Assistant Attorney General Christopher Madaio confirmed the Department continues to obstruct state Attorneys General (AGs) offices from their important work of protecting students, by ceasing to provide them with necessary information and locking them out of negotiated rulemaking proceedings. 

 

WITNESSES

 

Diane Auer Jones

Principal Deputy Under Secretary

Department of Education

 

Robert J. (RJ) Infusino

Former Student

Illinois Institute of Art

 

Christopher Madaio

Assistant Attorney General, Consumer Protection Division

Maryland Office of the Attorney General

 

David Halperin

Attorney & Counselor

Republic Report

 

Lindsey Burke (minority witness)

Director, Center for Education Policy

The Heritage Foundation

 

VIDEOS

Watch Chairman Krishnamoorthi’s opening statement.

Watch Rep. Connolly’s question line.

Watch Rep. Pressley’s question line.

Watch RJ Infusino’s opening statement.

116th Congress