State Shuts Down Diploma Mills
HOUSTON August 15, 2014 - Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott resolved the State’s enforcement action against a purported “academy” that falsely claimed to be an accredited educational institution. The agreement, which was memorialized in a final agreed judgment issued by a Harris County state district court, requires the operators of Houston-based Lincoln Academy to permanently shut down the so-called academy and pay all costs associated with the shutdown.Among its terms, the agreement requires the defendants to take the following actions:
The defendants’ court-restricted assets will provide more than $1.4 million in compensation to deceived customers. In the coming weeks, the Office of the Attorney General will review consumer complaints and other data to determine how it will administer the resources available for consumer restitution. Consumers with questions or who wish to file a complaint may call (800) 252-8011 (for callers within Texas) or (512) 463-2100 (for callers outside Texas). Complaint forms are also available online at www.texasattorneygeneral.gov.
Alert to educational institutions
The Texas Attorney General’s Office urges all educational institutions – especially community colleges and universities – to be diligent in reviewing purported high school transcripts issued by entities that may be more interested in amassing profits than preparing students for higher education. Often these schools are only available online, lack nationally-recognized regional accreditation, and permit students to complete degrees in a matter of hours or days with minimal coursework. Community colleges and universities should be aware that students receiving purported high school diplomas and transcripts from these entities are possibly ineligible for Texas and federal financial aid.
List of defendants included in the judgment