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Catching the real diploma mills

October 09, 2008

Re "No to diploma mills," editorial, Sept. 27

The Times urged Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger to sign SB 823, a poorly drafted bill that would have punished California's private post-secondary institutions and students. Fortunately, the governor made the right decision and vetoed the bill.

The governor concluded that students would not be protected unless a bill is firm, yet fair, to schools. SB 823, a statute that was strong-armed through the Legislature in the final hours of the last session, was deeply flawed from the start.

Unfortunately, The Times' editorial misled its readers by claiming SB 823 was legislation that would crack down on "diploma mills." Now that the governor has vetoed the bill, we hope The Times will reexamine its definitions.

Diploma mills are sham institutions -- unaccredited and unauthorized, essentially selling bogus credentials for a fee. If the proponents of SB 823 had designed their bill to go after diploma mills, they might actually accomplish something useful, and we would have supported it.

Now that SB 823 has

been defeated, Corinthian Colleges is committed to working toward a judicious bill that is fair for students and schools, while it constructs a regulatory framework that will actually hold up over time.

Jack D. Massimino

Santa Ana

The writer is chairman and CEO of Corinthian Colleges Inc.

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