Amendments to the Higher Education Act of 1965 (HEA) include new requirements in individual state authorization regulations that impact colleges offering online and distance learning. Cleveland Community College is working to achieve compliance as established in HEOA 600.9 (c).
This specific section of §600.9 State authorization states:
“If an institution is offering postsecondary education through distance or correspondence education to students in a State in which it is not physically located or in which it is otherwise subject to State jurisdiction as determined by the State, the institution must meet any State requirements for it to be legally offering postsecondary distance or correspondence education in that State. An institution must be able to document to the Secretary [of Education] the State’s approval upon request.”(Authority: 20 U.S.C. 1001 and 1002)
Therefore, the Department of Education requires all post-secondary educational institutions to be legally authorized to provide post-secondary educational instruction in their states. Many of these state laws and regulations also apply to online, distance and correspondence educational instruction offered in that state. As such, Cleveland Community College and its online/distance education programs must be authorized in certain states prior to offering those courses or programs to students residing in those states.
Admission of out-of-state applicants to an online program or individual course offered by CCC is dependent on the College’s ability to secure authorization from the applicant’s state of residence.
If CCC has not been authorized by the applicant’s state of residence to offer online, distance, and correspondence education, the applicant is not eligible for enrollment in an online program or individual course at the College. The College may periodically update the list due to changes in authorization status. For questions, please contact the College’s Distance Learning office at 704-669-4098. The College reserves the right to refuse enrollment to any student wishing to enroll in online courses if the student resides in a state where Cleveland Community College is not authorized to offer distance education.
How is CCC maintaining compliance?
Cleveland Community College is a member of the National Council for State Authorization Reciprocity Agreements (NC-SARA) which allows students in participating states and territories to enroll in online distance education classes.
CCC is complying with Federal Requirements by monitoring incoming applicants for out-of-state students who may wish to enroll in online programs or individual courses. If applicants from a State not authorized by CCC attempt to enroll, the College will notify the students of their ineligibility and remove them from courses for which they are registered.
Professional License/Licensure – Out-of-state students enrolled in a program leading to professional licensure
Cleveland Community College has been approved to participate in the National Council for State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement (NC-SARA). However, NC-SARA does not deal with professional licensing board approval for any courses or programs leading to professional licensure. If you are not a resident of North Carolina and you are taking an online course or hybrid program leading to professional licensure, please contact the dean of the degree program at Cleveland Community College to discuss licensure options prior to beginning your course of study.
State Authorization Student Complaint Procedure
Cleveland Community College desires to resolve student grievances, complaints, and concerns in an expeditious, fair, and amicable manner. Students residing outside of North Carolina while attending CCC who desire to resolve a grievance should first follow the college’s complaint procedure.
If you have any questions about the complaint process, please do not hesitate to contact:
Dr. Andy Gardner, Vice President of Student Services
137 South Post Road
Shelby, NC 28152
Telephone: (704) 669-4041
Students who have exhausted institutional grievance processes and are still dissatisfied with the outcome may file a complaint with the North Carolina Post-Secondary Education Complaints unit. Please review the NC Post-Secondary Education Student Complaint Process (PDF), print and complete the NC Post-Secondary Education Complaint Form (PDF) and submit the complaint to:
North Carolina Post-Secondary Education Complaints
c/o Student Complaints
University of North Carolina System Office
910 Raleigh Road, Chapel Hill, NC 27515-2688
Phone: (919) 962-4550
Website: North Carolina Post-Secondary Education Complaints
SARA-NC Complaint Process
Students may also file a complaint through SARA-NC. SARA-NC is the portal for the North Carolina State Education Assistance Authority. Students should follow the SARA-NC Complaint Process and use the SARA-NC Complaint Form (PDF).
SARA North Carolina
North Caroline State Education Assistance Authority
P.O. Box 14103
Research Triangle Park, NC 27709
T: (855) SARA-1-NC (727-2162)
T: (919) 549-8614, ext. 4667
SACSCOC Student Complaint Process
Students who have exhausted institutional grievance processes and are still dissatisfied with the outcome may file a complaint with Cleveland Community College’s accrediting agency. CCC is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) to award associate degrees, diplomas, and certificates. Students who file a complaint with the accrediting agency should follow the SACSCOC Complaint Procedure.
Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges
1866 Southern Lane
Decatur, Georgia 30033-4097
Telephone: (404) 679-4500
Website: The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges
Inquiries to SACSCOC should relate only to the accreditation status of the institution and not to general admission requirements, financial aid, educational programs or issues involving application of academic regulations.
The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) expects individuals to attempt to resolve complaints against the College through all means available to the student, including following the College’s own procedures, before submitting a complaint to the Commission. Therefore, the Commission’s usual practice is not to consider a complaint that is currently in administrative proceedings, including institutional proceedings, or in litigation.
However, if there is substantial, credible evidence that indicates systemic problems with an accredited institution, the Commission may, at its discretion, choose to proceed with the review.
The Commission will neither entertain complaints that are not in writing or which are anonymous, nor will it consider complaints sent electronically or through facsimile transmission. In addition, the Commission will not act on complaints submitted on behalf of another individual or complaints forwarded to the Commission.
Directory of States (Contacts)
For more information on State Authorization, please visit the following links:
The following links are provided and maintained by Cleveland Community College: