2-3-400 - ACCREDITATION WITHDRAWN
“Withdrawal of accreditation” differs from “denial of accreditation” in that denial rejects an institution’s application for an initial grant of accreditation or for a new grant to take effect upon the expiration of an existing grant of accreditation; withdrawal of accreditation takes away a current grant of accreditation before its expiration. Accreditation may be withdrawn from an institution through two types of Council action: “revocation of accreditation” or suspension of accreditation.”
2-3-401. Revocation. Revocation occurs without a hearing for any of the following reasons:
(a) An institution notifies the Council that it has closed and/or ceased operation.
(b) An institution whose accreditation has been summarily suspended does not challenge the suspension within 10 days of receipt of the suspension notice (see Section 2-2-301).
(c) The institution fails to file an annual report as required by the Council (see Sections 2-1-801 and 2-1-802).
(d) The institution fails to pay its annual fees, application fees, other assessed fees, or evaluation expenses (see Section 2-1-804).
A revocation action is not appealable. It requires an institution to start anew and to undergo the entire accreditation process to regain accreditation.
2-3-402. Suspension. Suspension of accreditation may occur when, in the judgment of ACICS, an institution no longer complies with the criteria.
By way of illustration, ACICS might issue an order of suspension for reasons such as the following:
(a) The institution or any of its components (a branch or new program, for example), is evaluated as directed by ACICS and is determined not to be in compliance with the criteria.
(b) Periodic required reports filed by the institution fail to conform to Council reporting requirements.
(c) The institution makes substantial or significant change, without notice to ACICS, in its operation,
structure, governance, ownership, control, location, facilities, or programs of study.
(d) The institution fails to respond to or cooperate with attempts by the Council to make arrangements for a site evaluation.
(e) The institution has deviated from the criteria or other directives of ACICS.
(f) The institution fails to disclose any agreements, options, or other contractual arrangements between the institution and other parties which bear on the management or control of the main campus or its nonmain campuses.
In all cases of suspension, the Council retains discretion to specify whether and under what conditions the institution might apply for an initial grant of accreditation.
2-3-403. Show-Cause Directive. When the accreditation of an institution is subject to suspension action (other than summary suspension under Section 2-2-301) because the Council has reason to believe that the institution is not, or may not be, in compliance with the Accreditation Criteria, the institution will be provided in writing with the alleged deficiencies and will be invited to “show cause” why its accreditation should not be suspended or otherwise conditioned.
A show-cause directive is not a negative or conditioning action. Rather, it is issued to an institution for it to come forward and prove that a negative or conditioning action should not be taken. However, the opportunity to show cause before the Council will be considered to be a hearing as defined in Section 2-3-500. A suspension order may be issued by ACICS as the result of this hearing, and such action is considered a final action which may only be appealed to the Review Board as described in section 2-3-600. Following receipt of a show-cause directive, the institution must bring itself into compliance within the time frames specified in Title II, Chapter 3, or the institution will be subject to final adverse action.
In many circumstances, it is possible for an institution to respond to a show-cause directive in writing by which it demonstrates correction of the condition upon which the directive was based. When the reasons for the show-cause are satisfied, the directive may be lifted either by the Executive Director in cases where no evaluation is involved or by ACICS in cases where evaluation of additional material is required and following such evaluation. All institutions directed by the Council to show cause why their accreditation should not be suspended or otherwise conditioned will be directed to submit a school closure plan and may be required to submit a teach-out agreement as described in Section 2-2-303 of the Accreditation Criteria.
2-3-404. Procedural Guarantees. In all cases where accreditation is subject to withdrawal by suspension under Section 2-3-402, the institution is afforded the following procedural guarantees:
(a) Opportunity for a hearing before ACICS on all material issues in controversy.
(b) Written prior notice of the proceedings, the charges levied, and the standards by which the institution
ultimately is to be judged.
(c) A decision on the record alone and a statement of reasons for the ultimate decision.
(d) A right of appeal as provided in Section 2-3-600.
(e) If the Review Board affirms the withdrawal of accreditation by way of suspension, the appeal shall be deemed to be finally disposed of upon issuance of the decision and publication will be made as described in Section 2-3-607.