Today, the Obama administration released its latest proposal on how colleges that offer distance education programs to students in other states should be regulated. The proposed regulations will be published in the Federal Register on July 25, and the public comment period will end August 24. The Department expects to publish a final regulation before the end of the year.

Our initial analysis finds that the rule upholds the SARA framework allowing state reciprocity agreements and eliminates a particularly burdensome requirement that home states are required to perform an active review of out of state colleges providing distance education in their state.

The rule does not specifically touch upon either clinical education or internships directly, instead focusing on for profit education and international programs operating in the United States.

Overall, the draft rule is a step forward from prior drafts and the Department’s overt support of the SARA framework provides ASAHP members in SARA states with stronger regulatory and fiscal stability for the long term.

ASAHP will be examining this draft rule in greater depth and providing specific comments to the Department during the 30 day comment period.

 The proposed regulations can be accessed at