The California State Approving Agency for Veterans Education (CSAAVE), which certifies colleges to award federal education aid to veterans and service members, has suspended the eligibility of colleges from other states, reports Inside Higher Ed.
Three of the suspended colleges from Missouri—Park University, Webster University, and Columbia College—persuaded a judge to block the agency's actions, Inside Higher Ed reported. The agency has until September 21 to show why the suspensions should move forward.
CSAAVE, which determines which colleges are eligible for GI Bill reimbursement in California, sent suspension letters to several colleges outside the state based on the agency's "new interpretation of federal regulations," reported Inside Higher Ed. According to these letters, the suspensions are due to the location of the colleges outside of the state.
In Park University's suspension letter, CSAAVE stated that the university "is not recognized as a main campus or a branch campus by the Higher Learning Commission, but rather as an off-campus instructional site. According to HLC, an off-campus instructional site is operationally dependent on the main campus." The agency added that it may combine approval of courses offered by a college or university's extension location with its approval of the main or branch campus, but only if the extension is located within the same state as the campus on which it is dependent.
Other colleges have also received suspension letters, including Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, University of Maryland University College, and Central Texas College.
Curt Cashour, press secretary for the federal Veteran Affairs Department, told Inside Higher Ed that students have been notified by CSAAVE if their school is at risk for losing GI Bill approval. He added that the VA is working with CSAAVE and the affected colleges to resolve the issue.