Dow Lohnes has extensive experience in working with the state agencies that authorize postsecondary institutions, the accrediting agencies that oversee their quality and the state licensure boards that qualify their graduates. We have assembled a comprehensive library of state laws and regulations, as well as state and accreditation guidelines, guidance and forms, that provide a background to our working knowledge of how the states and accreditors perform these “gatekeeper” functions, as well as the individuals who actually process the applications and make the decisions.
Our attorneys and professionals have long experience in managing disputes with accreditors and state authorizing agencies, from negotiations through judicial review. Our practice in this arena is greatly aided by the presence of two professionals with many years of direct experience in accreditation, Dr. Robin Dasher-Alston and Jay Vaughan, and one partner with extensive experience in state regulation, Greg Ferenbach.
We have extensive experience in assisting institutions obtain initial licensure and accreditation and in maintaining that status through periodic reaffirmation reviews and in the face of structural, financial or operational changes, and we perform due diligence in this complex arena in transactions involving the sale or acquisition of institutions. We also represent a number of accrediting organizations, where we provide assistance in ensuring that their policies and procedures are consistent with contemporary legal standards.
We have particularly extensive expertise in the increasingly important area of the licensure and authorization of educational services delivered across state and national borders, especially with regard to online learning. Dow Lohnes’ periodic survey of state regulation of e-learning, conducted in cooperation with the associations of state regulators, provides a knowledge base that is unequalled in the field and our subscription service on state authorization is an indispensible tool for institutions seeking to expand their distance learning programs or maintain compliance with state and federal requirements.