WASHINGTON POST: The toughest for-profit college rules in years are here. And lawmakers are still fighting over them.

Career College Central Summary:

  • A spending plan released by a House committee Tuesday would prevent the Obama administration from moving forward with new regulations limiting the amount of debt students can carry in career-training programs, two weeks before the rules take effect.
  • For nearly six years, administration officials have fought to institute regulations to protect students from winding up with tens of thousands of dollars of debt for a certificate. The Education Department is on the verge of enforcing these rules for the first time at a time when some for-profit colleges, such as Corinthian and ITT, are under fire for leaving students drowning in debt.
  • But on Tuesday, the House Appropriations Committee renewed the fight by unveiling a spending bill that prohibits the Education Department from enacting the new policy. The prohibition is one of several policy provisions directed at the department, which Republicans also want to block from establishing a college rating system and dictating how states must license institutions of higher education.
  • "This legislation continues our efforts to reduce wasteful spending, to stop harmful and unnecessary regulations that kill jobs and impede economic growth, and to make wise investments in proven programs on behalf of the American taxpayer," House Appropriations Chairman Hal Rogers said in a statement.
  • Despite the committee's prohibition, the Education Department's rules will still take effect July 2015. But if the provision makes it into the final budget and is signed into law, the rule could be repealed in October. It is highly unlikely that the president would agree to dismantle a piece of regulation that his administration has fought so hard to enact, but lawmakers' continued effort to scuttle the rules shows the fight is far from over.
  • “With students across the country reeling from the predatory behavior of failed and fraudulent ‘career’ colleges, it’s truly mind-boggling that House Republicans are still fighting tooth and nail to protect schools that take advantage of students and leave taxpayers with the bill," Education Secretary Arne Duncan said in a statement. "Make no mistake: a vote for this proposal is a vote to leave students in the dark and taxpayers holding the bag. Both deserve better.”

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