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Committee Approves Higher Education Regulatory Relief Legislation

H.R. 2637 eliminates the gainful employment, state authorization, and credit hour mandates

The House Committee on Education and the Workforce, chaired by Rep. John Kline (R-MN), today approved with bipartisan support the Supporting Academic Freedom through Regulatory Relief Act (H.R. 2637). Introduced by Subcommittee on Higher Education and Workforce Training Chairwoman Virginia Foxx (R-NC) and Rep. Alcee L. Hastings (D-FL), the legislation will limit federal overreach in postsecondary academic affairs and eliminate three burdensome regulations affecting colleges and universities.

“To best prepare today’s students to join tomorrow’s workforce and promote continued ingenuity in higher education, we must ensure the federal government does not overwhelm colleges with poorly conceived regulations that waste time and money,” Chairman Kline said. “The Supporting Academic Freedom through Regulatory Relief Act will take three particularly punitive federal mandates off the table and protect higher education institutions from unnecessary financial and regulatory burdens that could limit their ability to offer innovative programs and training to American students. I applaud Rep. Foxx for her leadership on this important issue, and hope the legislation will come before the House of Representatives for a vote in the coming weeks.”

Rep. Foxx said, “Students and institutions stand to be unfairly burdened by the Obama administration’s ill-conceived program integrity regulations. The Supporting Academic Freedom through Regulatory Relief Act will remove the barrier three of those regulations put in the way of schools working to innovate, grow, and meet the changing demands of an increasingly diverse American student body. I hope to see the House of Representatives act soon to remove these barriers as well so issues of affordability, accountability, and transparency can be carefully addressed during the reauthorization of the Higher Education Act.”

The following higher education institutions and organizations have expressed support for the Supporting Academic Freedom through Regulatory Relief Act:
  • American Council on Education
  • Association of American Universities
  • Association of Jesuit Colleges and Universities
  • Association of Private Sector Colleges and Universities
  • Council for Christian Colleges & Universities
  • Council for Higher Education Accreditation
  • Excelsior College
  • National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities
  • National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators
  • Rebuilding America's Middle Class, a coalition of community colleges
  • Western Governors University
The Supporting Academic Freedom through Regulatory Relief Act is also supported by a number of regional accrediting agencies. To learn more about H.R. 2637 and view letters of support, click here.

To read opening statements, review amendments, or watch an archived webcast of today’s markup, visit

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