Drinker Biddle’s Education Law Group offers demonstrated national leadership in handling the core issues of postsecondary educational institutions. We bring to these engagements extensive knowledge of private and public, for-profit and not-for-profit educational institutions, and the legal and regulatory environment in which they operate. We represent educational institutions themselves, accrediting agencies for postsecondary schools and investors in for-profit educational institutions. Resident primarily in the firm’s Washington, D.C. office, we are thoroughly involved in legislative and regulatory matters before the Congress, the U.S. Department of Education and state regulatory agencies throughout the nation.
Accrediting Agencies. Drinker Biddle has a leading national practice in representing accrediting agencies for postsecondary education. We routinely guide accrediting agencies through the U.S. Department of Education recognition process. The firm also advises on the development of accreditation standards and procedures, the administration of the accreditation process and legal issues pertinent to accreditation. The firm has successfully defended challenges to accreditation decisions in the courts.
U.S. Department of Education. The Education Law Group has specific expertise in advising clients on the complex requirements of the Title IV federal student financial aid system. The group advises both for-profit and not-for-profit higher educational institutions subject to compliance reviews and investigations conducted by the U.S. Department of Education. We have broad experience challenging adverse regulatory actions through various administrative appeal procedures. Our lawyers have developed extensive contacts with the U.S. Department of Education’s national and regional staff.
Institutions of Higher Education. The firm represents leading higher educational institutions, including major non-profit universities and established for-profit career education institutions. We counsel educational institution clients on a full range of education regulatory issues at the federal and state level. In addition, we provide institutions of higher education with a full range of legal services, including employment and labor, corporate, and intellectual property matters.
Online Education. With clients including the leading accredited universities offering online degree programs, the firm offers experienced counsel in this newest facet of educational institutions. We have served at the forefront of legislative and regulatory change to enable online education to be successful for schools and their students.
Private Equity Investment. The for-profit education sector, growing and rapidly consolidating from “mom and pop” operations into sizable entities, today attracts significant interest and investment from private equity investors and funds. We routinely counsel private equity groups on regulatory matters associated with their investments in for-profit education, including the advice on change of ownership requirements. Our deep understanding and involvement in the accrediting and regulatory environment especially serves the needs of private equity investors.
Legislation and Policy Making. The Education Law Group assists in the preparation of legislative proposals, development of testimony and appearances in hearings before Congressional committees. We analyze and track legislation and work closely with lawmakers and staff on educational issues. We have a wide range of contacts and relationships in the Washington education community and provide clients with informed and timely insights on policy developments.
Litigation. The firm has successfully represented clients at all levels of the federal and state courts. It has particular capabilities in litigation involving educational issues. The resources of the firm’s litigation practices are available to assist education clients in virtually every area of the law. With a results-oriented focus, the firm’s litigators counsel clients on preventative steps to avoid litigation and, if litigation arises, seek to achieve clients’ goals quickly and efficiently.