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California Regulator Seeks To Shut Down 'Learn To Code' Bootcamps 374

Posted by Soulskill
from the here-for-the-danegeld dept.
cultiv8 writes: "The Bureau for Private Postsecondary Education (BPPE), a unit in the California Department of Consumer Affairs charged with licensing and regulating postsecondary education in California, is arguing that 'learn to code' bootcamps fall under its jurisdiction and are subject to regulation. In mid-January, BPPE sent cease and desist letters to Hackbright Academy, Hack Reactor, App Academy, Zipfian Academy, and others. Unless they comply, these organizations face imminent closure and a hefty $50,000 fine. A BPPE spokesperson said these organizations have two weeks to start coming into compliance."
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California Regulator Seeks To Shut Down 'Learn To Code' Bootcamps

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  • California (Score:5, Insightful)

    by gd2shoe (747932) on Friday January 31, 2014 @11:15AM (#46119831) Journal
    Yep. This sounds like California.
    • Re:California (Score:5, Insightful)

      by idobi (820896) on Friday January 31, 2014 @11:25AM (#46119949) Homepage
      If you're charging someone $15000 for a 10 week course, and promising jobs at companies "like Facebook and Google," you probably need to fall under some sort of regulation and compliance.
      • Hack Reactor claims 99% placement?

        If true, maybe this really is an innovative education environment that aggressive regulation should stay away from.

        • Re:California (Score:4, Informative)

          by alen (225700) on Friday January 31, 2014 @11:43AM (#46120185)

          what is the small print

          unless its really 99% of their grads are hired for real software jobs which i don't believe they need to be truthful. every school that hypes a placement rate always has some small print that shows the 90% number is a small percentage of sampled students

        • Re:California (Score:5, Informative)

          by pesho (843750) on Friday January 31, 2014 @11:47AM (#46120229)
          The regulation is hardly aggressive. According to the regulators for now all the companies need to show is a good faith effort to come in compliance. The article headline is obviously misleading.
      • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

        by Anonymous Coward

        If you're charging someone $15000 for a 10 week course, and promising jobs at companies "like Facebook and Google," you probably need to fall under some sort of regulation and compliance.

        If you're charging $15k a head, and you're whining about the undue burden of a "hefty" $50k fine, then you have what, 10 clients?

        • If you're charging someone $15000 for a 10 week course, and promising jobs at companies "like Facebook and Google," you probably need to fall under some sort of regulation and compliance.

          If you're charging $15k a head, and you're whining about the undue burden of a "hefty" $50k fine, then you have what, 10 clients?

          An unregulated school could well be a startup that has cash flow issues due to debt, low exposure, uncertainty, etc. Any extra expense even a fee notoriously regarded as a fine could be a real setback.

      • Re:California (Score:5, Insightful)

        by Chris Mattern (191822) on Friday January 31, 2014 @11:42AM (#46120171)

        No, if you are promising jobs that you can't actually guarantee, you don't need regulation, you need to be prosecuted for fraud. That simple.

        • Re: California (Score:5, Informative)

          by Anonymous Coward on Friday January 31, 2014 @11:50AM (#46120281)

          Regulation can prevent harm. Litigation is expensive, time consuming, and a crap shoot with loaded dice since the perpetrator has much deeper pockets. Also see tort reform which gutted your only recourse. Deregulation and tort reform are done for the wealthy to give them impunity.

          • Re: California (Score:5, Insightful)

            by jythie (914043) on Friday January 31, 2014 @12:49PM (#46120873)
            *nods* litigation, while it has a wonderful DIY feel to it, puts the burden of enforcement on people with slim resources. Regulation on the other hand involves a funded group who's full time job involves ensuring entities are obeying the law.

            This is what drives me crazy about people ranting at how 'sue crazy' america is. Of course we see lot of lawsuits, a significant number of our laws are not enforced until someone starts a civil case. Many things that people assume the police and prosecutors would handle in fact can only be triggered by a private lawsuit, thus if one is wronged the state will not help (much less proactively investigate) on your behalf unless one is willing to invest the capital in bringing a civil case.
            • Re: California (Score:4, Insightful)

              by Anonymous Coward on Friday January 31, 2014 @01:17PM (#46121169)

              *nods* litigation, while it has a wonderful DIY feel to it, puts the burden of enforcement on people with slim resources. Regulation on the other hand involves a funded group who's full time job involves ensuring entities are obeying the law.

              Unfortunately, it also often leads to 'regulatory capture', the phenomenon in which the 'regulated' group actually ends up controlling the regulator in practice. (See the financial industry's recent mess as an example.) The trick to fixing this, however, isn't getting rid of the regulation. It's making sure that those who *enforce* the regulations are rewarded for doing so.

      • If that is what they are promising and the statistics don't match there are plenty of laws about fair marketing and fraud that would open them up to well more than a $50,000 fine.
      • Re:California (Score:4, Interesting)

        by cultiv8 (1660093) on Friday January 31, 2014 @11:45AM (#46120201) Homepage

        If you're charging someone $15000 for a 10 week course

        My spouse's employer recently paid that amount for a 2 day SAP course, and I'm pretty sure CA regulators are not going after the company providing the SAP course.

        promising jobs at companies "like Facebook and Google,"

        I do not see a promise or guarantee of employment anywhere in the article or in a brief search of their websites.

        • by jythie (914043)
          Even in B2B situations, often the companies that run these courses are indeed registered with the state.
      • If they truly are promising employment upon completion of their course then the students have grounds for a refund if they fail to be employed. What is the purpose of this government body? To ensure students are not ripped off? California all ready has a consumer protections enforced by the Department of Justice, this is just another bureaucratic hurdle imposed by California that will stifle smaller companies while protecting established companies and universities from competition.
      • by ganjadude (952775)
        Yeah, If the course was free (did not RTFA) I would argue that cali can go fuck off, but if they are charging and making promises, there should be some kind of regulation.
      • Re:California (Score:5, Insightful)

        by khallow (566160) on Friday January 31, 2014 @11:51AM (#46120301)

        If you're charging someone $15000 for a 10 week course, and promising jobs at companies "like Facebook and Google," you probably need to fall under some sort of regulation and compliance.

        I'm echoing what's already been said here. But regulation and compliance already exists. Fraud didn't become legal just because. If fraud and similar crimes are not being prosecuted, then it is an enforcement problem not a lack of regulation problem.

      • Wouldn't false advertising or fraud laws already cover that?

  • by gnasher719 (869701) on Friday January 31, 2014 @11:16AM (#46119843)
    then surely there is good reason that this should be regulated.
    • by andyring (100627) on Friday January 31, 2014 @11:24AM (#46119943) Homepage

      Why? Is there a specific price point at which regulation should be automatic?

      On what do you base your premise that regulation is both necessary and positive?

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Anonymous Coward

        On what do you base your premise that regulation is both necessary and positive?

        Experience. History. Fraud.

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by ph1ll (587130)

        "Is there a specific price point at which regulation should be automatic?"

        Any financial transaction. This is fairly standard.

        • by Scutter (18425) on Friday January 31, 2014 @11:36AM (#46120087) Journal

          "Is there a specific price point at which regulation should be automatic?"

          Any financial transaction. This is fairly standard.

          Why? Should garage sales be regulated? Why does the government need to be involved in every facet of your life?

          • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

            by CanHasDIY (1672858)

            "Is there a specific price point at which regulation should be automatic?"

            Any financial transaction. This is fairly standard.

            Why? Should garage sales be regulated?

            Depends on the circumstances - if you're having a garage sale maybe 2-3 times a year, it seems like a waste of resources.

            However, if your primary source of income is "garage sales," and you're holding one every weekend if not every day (we call that "running a flea market" 'round these parts), then yea, you're a business and need to be regulated.

            Of course, this is all ignoring the fact that garage sales are already regulated in most places, by way of permit requirements.

            Why does the government need to be involved in every facet of your life?

            Control, duh. In the case of private

            • by countvlad (666933)

              Control, duh. In the case of private citizens, I highly disagree with the practice, as it limits liberty; however, in reference to businesses, the government should be up their asses 24/7/365 - there's a damn good reason the Constitution doesn't give any rights to corporations.

              The only entity that the US Constitution gives rights to is the US Government, by design.

          • by rossdee (243626) on Friday January 31, 2014 @11:49AM (#46120261)

            " Should garage sales be regulated?"

            House sales are regulated, I don't see why garages should be any different.

          • by westlake (615356)

            Why? Should garage sales be regulated?

            Garage sales are regulated.

            For traffic control, zoning violations and other reasons.

          • For every rhetorical question, there is an answer [beverlyhills.org]. I used to live in Beverly Hills, and was surprised when I learned that a permit is required for a garage sale. (I was amused to see in my search on Google that Beverly Hills, TX also requires a garage sale permit.)
        • by SuperKendall (25149) on Friday January 31, 2014 @11:37AM (#46120097)

          Any financial transaction. This is fairly standard.

          If I beat you every day your whole life, it's "fairly standard" but does not make it right.

          There's lots of transactions that are not really regulated, especially cash ones...

        • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

          by ganjadude (952775)
          In california there are stories of little kids getting fined for running lemon aid stands in the summer. This is about normal for the over controlling sons of bitches who run cali

          Having said that I do agree that if they are making promises of 99% placement, they really should be forced to prove it otherwise its no different than snake oil
      • by madro (221107)

        There are price levels where the risk of fraud and abuse may outweigh the costs of enforcement and compliance. People who travel to other countries cannot carry more than $10000 in cash without reporting it. The risk is money laundering and drug running.

        Regulating everything or regulating nothing always leads to huge Type I/Type II errors. Reasonable people can disagree on the appropriate level of compromise.

    • So should every technical training course for firewalls, networking, VMWare, etc. be regulated similarly? Those are $5k+ a week.

      • by AuMatar (183847) on Friday January 31, 2014 @11:59AM (#46120377)

        Yes. However those courses, while insanely expensive and not worth the cost IMO, do provide what they promise- a certain level of knowledge on the topic, so the vast majority are ok. The bootcamps promise that at the end of camp that you're ready for employment as a professional programmer and that a certain amount of their graduates (usually very high) receive jobs as a programmer within a short time of graduation. These are both false claims, and regulation should clamp down on them.

    • Doesn't that depend on what the course is worth? Programming is a relatively well paid profession, particularly in the US. It is conceivable that a good ten-week course could pay for itself almost immediately if a student could then expect to secure a better position with a significantly higher salary as a result of their improved skill and understanding.

      For contrast, in the UK university fees are highly controversial but can be up to £9,000 (almost US$15,000 today) per year. However, reputable profes

    • by cultiv8 (1660093)
      My spouse's employer recently paid that amount for a 2 day SAP course, and I'm pretty sure CA regulators are not going after the company providing the SAP course.
  • by Cornwallis (1188489) on Friday January 31, 2014 @11:17AM (#46119849)

    “Our primary goal is not to collect a fine. It is to drive them to comply with the law,” said Russ Heimerich, a spokesperson for BPPE. Heimerich is confident that these companies would lose in court if they attempt to fight BPPE.

    Sounds like a real charmer...

    • by Chris Mattern (191822) on Friday January 31, 2014 @11:46AM (#46120209)

      "We don't want money. They need to bow down and acknowledge us as Lord."

    • The headline and summary are about shutting them down. The article says both sides are working towards compliance.
      I was going to post the same quote, but not to show my badge of uninformed cynicism like you. Since this was created by California law, much as someone thinks it unnecessary, it is state law. And working for compliance instead of shuttering these camps is a good thing.
      California has piles of referendum votes, so if they think regulation is not needed they can get this stricken.

      Meanwhile, this is

  • Compliance (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Akratist (1080775) on Friday January 31, 2014 @11:18AM (#46119867)
    I absolutely detest the word "compliance." For some reason, it seems out of character to be used in what is ostensibly a "free society."
    • by Anonymous Coward on Friday January 31, 2014 @11:35AM (#46120075)

      There's actually a pretty good reason there are accredation standards in education. People are paying a lot of money. It's hard for someone to know (without actually taking the course) if the course is valuable or worthless. There are plenty of shysters out there who couldn't care less if you learn - they're just out for your money, and provide as little education as they can get away with ('For Profit" online universities are, IMO, more scam than educators).

      Whether it's a government or a private body, setting clear expectations on curriculum standards and certifying compliance with them is a highly useful service to keep students from getting victimized. Which means "compliance" with someone else's idea of what a reasonable student needs is not only not anathema, it can be a Very Good Thing.

      Being free to dupe people into paying a lot of money for a worthless service isn't exactly in character with a "free society" in any but the most extreme laisse faire ideologies.

    • Re:Compliance (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Smidge204 (605297) on Friday January 31, 2014 @11:39AM (#46120139) Journal

      I dunno, but compliance is not necessarily a bad thing.

      I want all of my electrical and electronic devices to comply with appropriate standards and regulations so they all work together and are safe to use.

      I want vehicles and buildings to comply with the myriad of safety regulations.

      I want my food and food preparation/handling facilities to comply with best practices.

      I don't know what the BPPE requires with respect to compliance (article does not say in what way these places are not in compliance), but maybe I want that too.
      =Smidge=

      • by _UnderTow_ (86073)

        I don't know what the BPPE requires with respect to compliance (article does not say in what way these places are not in compliance), but maybe I want that too. =Smidge=

        I fully agree. While at first it sounds like a typical bureaucratic money grab, I'd like to see what laws they're violating before further rushing to judgement.

  • by barlevg (2111272) on Friday January 31, 2014 @11:19AM (#46119879)
    What are the regulations regarding wilderness survival camps? What about rock & roll fantasy camps? Is he going to start going after knitting retreats?
    • by Dan Lyke (9648) <danlyke@flutterby.com> on Friday January 31, 2014 @11:24AM (#46119945) Homepage

      I think that it's probably about advertising: They're claiming 99% job placement, waving around the idea of six figure salaries, for $17k and 10 weeks. I'm not sure where you draw the line, but having tried to help counsel some lower income people who were looking at nursing schools, this is way the hell over the line.

      • by couchslug (175151)

        Nursing schools are a good example, as there is a surplus of nurses in many area due to older nurses staying in the job market.

        Commercial shools exist to fill classes and make money, any other outcomes are secondary.

    • by gman003 (1693318)

      Well, these coding courses are aimed at creating careers - the "students" are trying to make this their job. People going to any of your examples are not - they may be developing skills, but the camps are for hobbies, not careers.

      That seems like a significant enough difference to me.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday January 31, 2014 @11:21AM (#46119903)

    If these places are not offering a recognized credential of completion (such as a degree or certificate recognized by the prevailing accreditation bodies), then they are not an educational institution subject to state regulation. Instead, they fall under Federal Dept. of Ed Work Training facilities.

    Federal Law is settled on this, and there are at least 100 cases that I can find that set this precedent.

    • by EmagGeek (574360)

      Ok, I'm gonna go ahead and disagree with you there. Would you care to cite any of these "100 cases" for us laypeople?

    • by tibman (623933)

      I only checked out http://www.hackbrightacademy.c... [hackbrightacademy.com] but they don't appear to offer any kind of certification. Just 10 weeks of training for women that ends with a "Career Day".

    • by mattie_p (2512046)

      Federal law normally preempts state law, in cases where both jurisdictions have an interest. However, the courts have generally allowed states to provide more specific regulations so long as they meet the requirements of the federal law. Two examples.

      Consider minimum wage laws. The US Government requires a minimum wage of $7.25 an hour. Many states and jurisdictions require a higher wage, and are fully allowed to do so, because whatever rate they set above $7.25 meets the requirements of the federal mi

  • by Improv (2467) <pgunn@dachte.org> on Friday January 31, 2014 @11:23AM (#46119923) Homepage Journal

    So, what does compliance involve? That's the first question we should be asking.

    If your local libertarian hot dog stand guy rages at you about maybe being shut down because the health department is on his back, instead of saying "fuck guvment", maybe you should figure out if it's something as simple as them having hygiene standards for how he cooks, and some small fee for a license. I mean, maybe there is something unreasonable or crazy, and there are some industries that corrupt government and do rent-seeking in order to limit competition, but these details matter.

    • Your hot dog stand may SEEM to have been doing just fine, but if you don't give a but to us hot dog stands have a mysterious way of causing terrible accidents to youse owners. So cough it up.

    • by Akratist (1080775) on Friday January 31, 2014 @11:44AM (#46120193)
      I do find the luv/hate libertarian thing kinda funny when these things come up. Statist sorts believe that since people are fallible, there needs to be people to regulate people. Libertarians believe that since people can't be trusted to run the lives of other people, then we need to trust individuals instead of groups. Both sorts miss the fact that the basic problem is that we recognize there are people we can't trust. Anyway, as far as regulation goes, I've gotten salmonella twice in my life, both times from large corporate food chains that were regularly inspected by the health department, had food handling standards in place, etc. I've eaten plenty of time at mom and pop greasy spoons and have not gotten sick from them. Likewise, I didn't go to a coding boot camp, but got my degree from an accredited four year college. While most of my professors were good, the guy teaching the .NET class I took had simply gone to a weekend seminar on coding in .NET and copied all the .ppt slides and used them as his own (I knew more than he did about .NET). I had another professor for calc who, while not intentionally being a fraud, absolutely could not communicate the subject matter in a way that was comprehensible. In both of these cases, I figure I was out money because of fraud, so it can happen anywhere. If the coding boot camps are making false claims, then it seems more like grounds for a hefty lawsuit by former students, than grounds for another layer of regulatory compliance, particularly when the products of the four year colleges may or may not be subject to the same type of scrutiny in terms of product quality (disclaimer -- I don't know what the process for this is in CA).
    • by Smidge204 (605297)

      I had the same question and started clicking around. I came up with this:

      http://www.bppe.ca.gov/lawsreg... [ca.gov]

      Just browsing through the dense wall of legalese, it seems largely related to being clear (and documented) in purpose and intent, having structured hierarchy of responsibility, good record keeping practices, providing appropriate resources (access to staff, libraries/labs, equipment etc), having clearly defined financial policies in place, making sure your faculty is competent and up to date on their su

  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday January 31, 2014 @11:26AM (#46119957)
    The summary makes it sound like these are people in makerspaces getting free skills. The article says that these places are charging tuition $15k - $19k for an intensive (~ few months) training course, presumably with a certificate of completion. The state and the public have a vested interest in ensuring people get their money's worth. The article also states that the bureau doesn't not demand immediate compliance in 2 weeks, but that they show progress towards attaining compliance. Look around you. Experience shows that the free market is not effective at eliminating scammers. Sometimes regulation and auditing is good.
  • You have 15 seconds to comply. [youtu.be] You are in direct violation of penal code 113, section 9...

  • Sometimes I am annoyed that the word "too" exists. Change the spelling so that the different meaning stands out. Not like context wouldn't play a role there. But in cases like these, I think there aren't enough "o"s in "Too much" or "Too far" or "Too stupid."

  • There are a number of training classes and "bootcamps" for various things which are based in California. Cisco Certified Internetworking Expert certification bootcamps and various others come to mind. Those bootcamps (and many others) can be many thousands of dollars.. So the question becomes, at what point do you start considering regulation for a group? When the amount of money they collect is over $X? Or when the duration of the course is over X weeks? If they are going to regulate courses at all, these

  • by ErichTheRed (39327) on Friday January 31, 2014 @11:46AM (#46120221)

    Back in the late 90s / early 2000s, training companies were making tons and tons of money funneling people with zero computer experience through MCSE certification bootcamps. Basically, they would do the entire set of certification exams in 2 weeks, and not all of them were 100% honest to students about their chances of passing or even getting a job once they were done. These bootcamps still exist, but from what I've experienced, they're only for people who actually know the material and just need to update their skills quickly. The earlier iterations of these were definitely certification mills though. I went to one around 2001 because I wanted to update my certs. The class was split -- some of us were there to just do a quick skills upgrade, and others had obviously been suckered in by a dishonest recruiter. To get these folks to pass, instructors would give them copied exam questions to study and pay for these students' extra chances to pass the exams. The school would then be able to tout their super-high pass rate for the exams. And these weren't cheap either -- some were $7K or $8K in 1990s dollars. Even when you factor the cost of a hotel stay, meals and an instructor, the profit margin is huge.

    Now it seems that the focus is less on system admin skills and more on "web coding" like these schools are offering classes in. Seems like a perfect hook -- young students who use their iPhone or Android mobile constantly get sold the dream that they too can be the next great app writer and make millions. And it really does seem doable -- with all the web frameworks out there, there's very little a "coder" has to know about what's actually going on under the hood to make something that works. Problem is that paper MCSEs didn't work out so well when they got on the job, so I doubt these classes will help mint genius developers either. My boot camp class back in the day had a former bus driver and someone who was fresh out of the army in an unrelated field.

    Libertarians will say it's OK for businesses to take advantage of people, but I think education is a little bit different. Selling someone thousands of dollars in classes and telling them they're equivalent to CS graduates just isn't honest, and these schools profit off peoples' naivete and sell them dreams. The state gets to regulate educational institutions, so it makes sense that they're taking a look at them. And what if it was something simple like needing to publish student outcomes or pass rates? The libertarian free market would be all excited then, because the bad ones might be weeded out if students could be bothered to do research on statistics available from regulation.

    It took ages to weed the paper MCSEs out of the workforce, and it's still not 100% complete. Every time I meet an "IT professional" who has no troubleshooting ability, I think back to these bootcamps.

    • by dkleinsc (563838)

      Libertarians will say it's OK for businesses to take advantage of people, but I think education is a little bit different.

      I do not think it's OK for businesses to take advantage of people, and think that the people who engage in the kinds of practices you're talking about should be prosecuted for fraud:
      1. Students are defrauded, because they're told that passing these courses will get them good jobs. They're not infrequently induced to go into debt to pay for them based on these fraudulent claims.
      2. Whoever employs the "graduates" is defrauded, because they believed that they would be getting someone certifiably competent when

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Libertarians will NEVER say it's OK for businesses to take advantage of people. In What it Means to be a Libertarian, Charles Murray clearly states, "...the libertarian ethic is simple but stark ... thou shalt not deceive or defraud." Fraud and deceit are not accepted by Libertarians.

      Libertarianism promotes freedom from the majority of government regulation but NOT anarchy. In a Libertarian state there would be strong and effective civil courts to protect the consumers against institutions that aren't "100%

      • by Valdrax (32670) on Friday January 31, 2014 @01:15PM (#46121137)

        Libertarianism promotes freedom from the majority of government regulation but NOT anarchy. In a Libertarian state there would be strong and effective civil courts to protect the consumers against institutions that aren't "100% honest to students about their chances of passing or even getting a job once they were done."

        The main problem with a Libertarian ideal state is that it implicitly argues that all deterrence against fraud and other injuries to the public must be in the form of after-the-fact damage control via the courts (in which case the question of "How much justice can you afford?" frequently comes up) instead of by proactive government action.

        The purpose of regulation like this is to prevent people from being injured in the first place, because while they *might* be able to recover damages in court, and it *might* even break even financially, the opportunity costs are forever gone for those people. Worse, damage control is almost always more expensive than prevention, and some forms of damage simply can never be made up by the courts, as with birth defects caused by thalidomide or from Love Canal. It's better to prevent harm than to clean it up after.

        Courts simply do not work as a one size fits all means of deterring bad behavior.

      • by iamhigh (1252742)
        As another /.er stated recently, do you realized how many courts would be needed for this libertarian ideal? The government would be just as big as it is now, therefore requiring just as much money and therefore wielding just as much power. But they would all be judges... you know those "activist" judges that right-wingers (cousins of the libertarians) always complaint about.

        Not only that, it would make it so that the poor guy trying to find a job to support his family has to sue the company that took
  • Quick Fix.. (Score:2, Insightful)

    by LVSlushdat (854194)

    Here's a quick fix.. Move OUT of that bat-shit insane state.. Then let those insane asylum inmates running that state try to shut you down.. These coding academies are pretty much web-based anyway, so all they have *in* California are the offices.. Those could quickly be moved out to say, Texas or Nevada, with little or no impact on the company.. I was born and raised in California, but the wife and I got out of there in the mid-90s, and moved to Nevada. Unfortunantly, we still have relatives there, so I ha

  • by Joe_Dragon (2206452) on Friday January 31, 2014 @12:07PM (#46120459)

    Time for an IT / Tech apprenticeship system that can be a good way to train people while at least keeping from being an outright cash cow with all kinds of marking BS about jobs that you will get and why you should pay 50K+ to go to classes hear.

  • Missing the point (Score:4, Informative)

    by kelemvor4 (1980226) on Friday January 31, 2014 @01:13PM (#46121119)
    Other posters seem to think this is centered around making sure the schools are on the up and up. I think it's simply a money grab by the State of california. Here's the law, taken right from their website [ca.gov]:

    94930. Deposit of Fees, Adjustment of Fees, Reserve Balance
    (a) All fees collected pursuant to this article, including any interest on those fees, shall be deposited in the Private Postsecondary Education Administration Fund, and shall be available, upon appropriation by the Legislature, for expenditure by the bureau for the administration of this chapter.
    (b) If the bureau determines by regulation that the adjustment of the fees established by this article is consistent with the intent of this chapter, the bureau may adjust the fees. However, the bureau shall not maintain a reserve balance in the Private Postsecondary Education Administration Fund in an amount that is greater than the amount necessary to fund six months of authorized operating expenses of the bureau in any fiscal year.

    94930.5. Fee Schedule
    An institution shall remit to the bureau for deposit in the Private Postsecondary Education Administration Fund the following fees, in accordance with the following schedule:
    (a) The following fees shall be remitted by an institution submitting an application for an approval to operate, if applicable:
    (1) Application fee for an approval to operate: five thousand dollars ($5,000).
    (2) Application fee for the approval to operate a new branch of the institution: three thousand dollars ($3,000).
    (3) Application fee for an approval to operate by means of accreditation: seven hundred fifty dollars ($750).
    (b) The following fees shall be remitted by an institution seeking a renewal of its approval to operate, if applicable:
    (1) Renewal fee for the main campus of the institution: three thousand five hundred dollars ($3,500).
    (2) Renewal fee for a branch of the institution: three thousand dollars ($3,000).
    (3) Renewal fee for an institution that is approved to operate by means of accreditation: five hundred dollars ($500).
    (c) The following fees shall apply to an institution seeking authorization of a substantive change to its approval to operate, if applicable:
    (1) Processing fee for authorization of a substantive change to an approval to operate: five hundred dollars ($500).
    (2) Processing fee in connection with a substantive change to an approval to operate by means of accreditation: two hundred fifty dollars ($250).
    (d) (1) In addition to any fees paid to the bureau pursuant to subdivisions (a) to (c), inclusive, each institution that is approved to operate pursuant to this chapter shall remit both of the following:
    (A) An annual institutional fee, in an amount equal to three-quarters of 1 percent of the institution's annual revenues derived from students in California, but not exceeding a total of twenty-five thousand dollars ($25,000) annually.
    (B) An annual branch fee of one thousand dollars ($1,000) for each branch or campus of the institution operating in California.
    (2) The amount of the annual fees pursuant to paragraph (1) shall be proportional to the bureau's cost of regulating the institution under this chapter.
    (e) If the bureau determines that the annual cost of providing oversight and review of an institution, as required by this chapter, is less than the amount of any fees required to be paid by that institution pursuant to this article, the bureau may decrease the fees applicable to that institution to an amount that is proportional to the bureau's costs associated with that institution.

    94931. Late Payment
    (a) A fee that is not paid on or before the 30th calendar day after the due date for the payment of the fee shall be subject to a 25 percent late payment penalty fee.
    (b) A fee that is not paid on or before the 90th calendar day after the due date for payment of the fee shall be subject to a 35 percent late paymen

  • by Todd Knarr (15451) on Friday January 31, 2014 @02:30PM (#46121923) Homepage

    Exemptions to the CPPEA 2009 [ca.gov]. Notice the big one: schools charging a tuition of $2500 or less. That should outright exempt a lot of places once they file the right paperwork. The target of these regulations isn't the small places or pay-as-you-go classes. It's places like Silver State Helicopters that take in large tuition payments and then evaporate without delivering classes. That's why the regulations are light on teacher qualifications and heavy on the financial aspects of the schools and their owners including things like the required tuition recovery funds.

  • by cascadingstylesheet (140919) on Friday January 31, 2014 @08:53PM (#46125193)

    Ah, California ... clearly with your thriving economy and bright future, even more regulation is what you need.

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