Yeshiva University, the Orthodox community’s flagship institution, has received a warning that its accreditation may be in jeopardy, according to a disclosure the university made, as required by its accreditation agency.
In order to take advantage of federal grants and loans, colleges must be accredited by agencies recognized by the Department of Education.
The agency that gave YU the warning, the Middle States Commission on Higher Education, stated that it doesn’t have sufficient evidence that YU is in compliance with two of its standards, one concerning faculty governance and the other concerning the assessment of student learning.
The commission wants evidence that the school will create clear procedures and policies governing faculty hiring, promotion and grievances. It also wants to make sure that the faculty has sufficient input into the curriculum.
Concerning student learning, the commission wants the school to show that it has an organized way of evaluating its teaching and that it uses that information to improve its teaching.
YU declined to comment, and the Middle States Commission was unavailable for comment.
The Middle States Commission accredits more than 500 schools, and in the 2010-2011 calendar year it issued 23 notices or warnings, said Tim Willard, a spokesman for the National Education Accreditation Association in Washington, D.C.
YU did put a post on its Facebook page on Dec. 5: “President Joel shared good news with the YU community last week that the Middle States Commission on Higher Education has renewed the University’s accreditation.”
The post went on to say that Joel had already discussed the fact that YU was out of compliance on these two particular standards in his State of the University Address last fall, and that the school will update the commission in September 2013.
“These issues are well on their way to being addressed,” the Facebook post said.
Typically, the commission issues a warning when it believes the institution is capable of making the necessary improvements. After a warning, the commission makes a small team visit and requires a school to issue a follow-up report by Sept. 1, 2013.