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Accrediting agency sends warning to NIC

by MAUREEN DOLAN
Staff Writer | December 17, 2022 5:39 PM

North Idaho College’s accrediting organization, the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities sent a letter to the college today, Saturday, cautioning that the board's recent actions do not align with the eligibility requirements and standards for NWCCU accreditation.

“While NIC has submitted monitoring reports as required since that time, hired a new president, and has a fully constituted Board with five Trustees, recent and subsequent public actions of the NIC Board of Trustees appear to place the institution at significant risk of being out of compliance,” states the letter sent to the college’s Acting Co-CEOs Lloyd Duman and Sarah Garcia.

The letter outlines multiple eligibility requirements and accreditation standards the NWCCU executive board, which met Friday, has determined NIC is or appears to be out of compliance with.

Those eligibility requirements are related to: operational focus and independence; institutional integrity; the governing board; the chief executive officer, which in NIC’s case is the president; the administration; and the college’s relationship with NWCCU.

The letter lists eight standards of accreditation the college is or appears to be out of compliance with.

A definition of “show cause” is included in the letter:

“When the Commission finds that an institution has not taken satisfactory steps to address identified concerns or when an institution is found to be in serious non-compliance with the Commission’s accreditation criteria, it may require the institution to show-cause as to why its candidacy or accreditation should not be terminated. In such cases, the burden rests with the institution to demonstrate why its candidacy or accreditation should be continued.”

This is followed by a description of the related NWCCU accreditation action policy, which states the reasons an institution may be required to show cause, and calling on NIC to respond to the letter by Jan. 4 describing how the college is not out of compliance with the standards and requirements cited in the letter.

The complete letter can be read on cdapress.com.

NWCCU letter to NIC dated Dec. 17