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Legislature Approves Portantino’s Bill Protecting Students from Diploma Mills

Legislation to protect students from diploma mills and unscrupulous business practices has been approved by the State Assembly. The vote sends the measure, authored by Assemblymember Anthony Portantino (D-La Cañada Flintridge), to the Governor for signature.

AB 1889 includes language to clear-up technicalities in the Post-Secondary Education Bill of 2009 authored last year by Assemblymember Portantino. The bills provide oversight of private for-profit and non-profit education institutions in order to protect students from crooked schemes.

"AB 1889 allows good schools to expand at a time when our economy desperately needs to increase job training services," explained Assemblymember Portantino. "And it offers students a guarantee that their education and vocational training will be monitored and that regulations will be enforced."

Among the changes in AB 1889: Requires accreditation for schools offering doctoral degrees. Limits what types of jobs can be counted as job placements – clarifies that the job must require skills that the student learned in school. Allows some flexibility in examinations for specific occupational training programs. Provides a 1-year exemption for FAA-certified flight training schools and instructors.

"I believe these changes will ensure institutions don't inappropriately inflate job placement," stated Assemblymember Portantino. "A job sweeping floors in a restaurant should not qualify as job placement for cooking school graduates."

The Bureau for Private Post-Secondary Education had been suspended for two years leaving California without regulation of private, post-secondary schools. Many California students lost tuition or received worthless diplomas. Portantino's AB 48 (2009) re-established the bureau and regulation of these for-profit and non-profit schools, including protections for tuition and standards for diplomas.


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