State Authorizations and Individual State
States have long had the authority to regulate
institutions offering education within each state’s boundaries, regardless of
the educational modality (face-to-face, distance, other) being used. Maine is now the 36th state to
join the State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement (SARA), an initiative that
will make distance-education courses more accessible to students across state
lines and make it easier for institutions to participate in interstate distance
education. Participation in SARA was
approved in the statute by the 127th Maine Legislature, allowing the State
Board of Education to enter into the New England Board of Higher Education
(NEBHE) regional compact, designating Maine DOE as the portal agency for SARA.
What is SARA?
The State Authorization Reciprocity
Agreement is an agreement among member states, districts and territories that
establishes comparable national standards for interstate offering of post-secondary distance education courses and programs. It is intended to make
it easier for students to take online courses offered by post-secondary
institutions based in another state. SARA is overseen by a National Council and
administered by four regional education compacts. For further
information, please visit the National Council for State Authorization
Reciprocity Agreements website at http://nc-sara.org/content/basic-questions-about-sara. Maine’s Acting Education Commissioner, Bill
Beardsley says, “SARA facilitates Maine’s interface with education
opportunities across the country while bypassing the old case-by-case
burdensome course approval system. Maine students benefit and state red tape is
minimized with no loss of accountability. It is a state consortium approach we
Saint Joseph’s College is authorized or exempted
from authorization in all 50 states. Authorization in the state of North
Carolina is pending and the “good faith effort” provisions at C.F.R. § 600.9(c)34
CF applies– check back often for updates. Please read state-specific
disclosure language below.
The following are links to consumer
information notices and disclosures provided in accordance with the Higher Education
Opportunity Act with the reauthorized Higher Education Act of 1965, as amended.
Consumer Grievance Contact Information
Consumer Grievance Form and Release
Individual State Disclosure Statements
Non-SARA Participating State Specific Language
Student Tuition Recovery Fund (STRF) You must pay the
state-imposed assessment for the Student Tuition Recovery Fund (STRF) if all of the following
applies to you:
1. You are a student in an educational program, who is a
California resident, or are enrolled in a residency program and prepay all or part of your
tuition either by cash, guaranteed student loans, or personal loans, and
2. Your total charges are not paid by any third-party payer
such as an employer, government program or other payer unless you have a separate agreement
to repay the third party.
3. You are not eligible for protection from the STRF and you
are not required to pay the STRF assessment, if either of the following applies:
- You are not a California resident, or are not enrolled in
a residency program, or
- Your total charges are paid by a third party, such as an
employer, government program or other payer, and you have no separate agreement
to repay the third party.
The State of California created the Student Tuition Recovery
Fund (STRF) to relieve or mitigate economic losses suffered by students in educational
programs who are California residents, or are enrolled in a residency programs attending
certain schools regulated by the Bureau for Private Postsecondary and Vocational Education. You may be eligible for STRF if you are a California
resident or are enrolled in a residency program, prepaid tuition, paid the STRF assessment, and
suffered an economic loss as a result of the following:
1. The school closed before the course of instruction was
2. The school’s failure to pay refunds or charges on behalf
of a student to a third party for license fees or any other purposes, or to provide
equipment or materials for which a charge was collected within 180 days before the closure of
3. The school’s failure to pay or reimburse loan proceeds
under a federally guaranteed student loan program as required by law or to pay or reimburse
proceeds received by the school prior to closure in excess of tuition and other
4. There was a materials failure to comply with the Act or
this Division within 30 days before the school closed or, if the material failure began
earlier than 30 days prior to closure, the period determined by the Bureau.
5. An inability after diligent efforts to prosecute, prove,
and collect on a judgement against the institution for a violation of the Act.
However, no claim can be paid to any student without a
social security number or a taxpayer identification number. For further information, contact the Bureau for Private
Postsecondary Education at www.bppe.ca.gov or (916) 431-6959.
Kentucky Applicants: The Kentucky Education Professional Standards
Board does not approve the Master of Science in Education programs for K-12
licensure for students in their state in the following concentrations:
Educator, School Leadership, and Catholic School Leadership. Students from
Kentucky should not enroll in these programs if they are seeking licensure.
Massachusetts Applicants: Massachusetts students in the MSED Program
seeking initial certification should contact the Massachusetts Department of
Education here or here for possible additional requirements beyond those
fulfilled with the completion of the master’s degree from Saint Joseph’s
New York pre-licensure and NP educational tracks Nursing Students
need to be approved by the Board of Nursing. Nursing education and
administration tracks do NOT need approval.
North Carolina Applicants: Completion of the MSEd School Educator degree program does not guarantee advanced teacher licensure for North Carolina public schools. Candidates should contact their local school administrative offices and the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction regarding specific advanced licensure requirements in their program areas.
Completion of the Master of Science in Education in School Leadership degree program does not guarantee school administrator licensure in North Carolina. Students should check with local school administrative offices and the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction regarding specific licensure requirements.
North Carolina students have access to NCLIVE, www.nclive.org, which is available through public libraries in North Carolina for resources to support their education, both during their study and after graduation.
SARA States & Institutions
participating SARA institutions (updated: December 14, 2015)