ERIC Number: ED246733
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1982
Accrediting Agencies' Legal Responsibilities in Pursuit of the Public Interest. An Occasional Paper.
Kaplin, William A.
The evolution in the way courts have labeled or categorized accrediting agencies is considered, along with the legal and policy consequences of this evolution. Attention is focused on the public interest standard that is the core of these developments and on ways in which accrediting agencies can fulfill their legal responsibilities under this standard. Accrediting agencies as governmental entities, quasi-governmental entities, quasi-public entities, and private or nonpublic entities are discussed. It is suggested that the quasi-public category of law best serves the process of accreditation. This category focuses attention on the public service aspects of included entities. The quasi-public category provides a set of variously defined standards to guide courts in reviewing decisions of accrediting agencies and to guide accrediting officials and public policymakers in fulfilling accreditation's responsibilities to the public. The category also establishes the goal to serve the public interest. Four concepts critical to accreditation's future are: autonomy, impartiality, expertise, and public representation. A list of court cases and a brief bibliography are appended. (SW)
Descriptors: Accreditation (Institutions), Accrediting Agencies, Court Litigation, Legal Responsibility, Postsecondary Education, Public Policy, Public Service
Council on Postsecondary Accreditation, One Dupont Circle, N.W., Washington, DC 20036.
Publication Type: Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Council on Postsecondary Accreditation, Washington, DC.