Education

ITT closes nationwide after federal government stops new funding

ITT Technical Institute on Tuesday permanently closed its campuses nationwide, including a school on Gold Center Drive in Rancho Cordova.
ITT Technical Institute on Tuesday permanently closed its campuses nationwide, including a school on Gold Center Drive in Rancho Cordova. jhice@sacbee.com

After a long-running dispute with the federal government, ITT Technical Institute on Tuesday permanently closed its campuses nationwide, including a school in Rancho Cordova.

“It is with profound regret that we must report that ITT Educational Services, Inc. will discontinue academic operations at all of its ITT Technical Institutes permanently after approximately 50 years of continuous service,” the company announced on its website.

The school said actions and sanctions by the U.S. Department of Education forced ITT to cease operations.

The school is facing accusations from its accreditor, the group that provides accreditation. The company operates a campus at 10863 Gold Center Drive in Rancho Cordova.

In the official blog of the Department of Education, the agency notes that in recent years, ITT Educational Services Inc. has been the subject of state and federal investigations. Twice in 2016, the company has been found out of compliance with its accreditor’s standards.

“Over time, ITT’s decisions have put its students and millions of dollars in taxpayer funded federal student aid at risk,” the Education Department blog stated. “In response, over the last couple of years, we at the Department of Education have increased our financial oversight over ITT and required the school to boost its cash reserves to cover potential damages to taxpayers and students.”

The company said it will eliminate the positions of most of its 8,000 employees nationwide. The company operates 130 campuses in 38 states and has more than 40,000 students.

The company focuses on teaching in specific fields: Information Technology, Electronics Technology, Drafting and Design, Business, Criminal Justice and the Breckinridge School of Nursing and Health Sciences.

“Our focus and priority with our remaining staff is on helping the tens of thousands of unexpectedly displaced students with their records and future educational options,” said ITT in its news release.

The Department of Education noted in late August that to protect prospective students it was no longer allowing ITT to enroll new students who rely on federal aid.

“In addition, in case the school's actions cause it to close, we’re increasing the amount of cash reserves it must send us,” said the agency’s blog post on Aug. 25.

The agency also provided steps for ITT students upon closure of the school. The agency said that students may be eligible for a “closed school loan discharge.”

Bill Lindelof: 916-321-1079, @Lindelofnews

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