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Federal regulators are threatening to crack down on for-profit schools that are eager to take students' cash, but aren't necessarily coming through with lucrative paying gigs upon graduation. Those for-profit schools include a number of culinary schools around the country that are increasingly taking the heat. Several are embroiled in actual lawsuits.
According to Politico, the Department of Education is expected to set what many call "gainful employment" rules as early as this month. That move could severely limit the ability of for-profit schools to access federally-backed student loans. That means cooking schools like Le Cordon Bleu, Art Institute of Houston, Western Culinary Institute and dozens more, might be facing their own elimination challenge as they face increasing pressure to prove their students are able to secure jobs upon graduation, and have the ability to pay back student loans that can quickly reach $50,000.
Attorney Michael Louis Kelly, who is suing Career Education Corp. (the parent company of Le Cordon Bleu) on behalf of California students, told NPR that the school made unrealistic promises.
"The model doesn't work," Kelly told NPR. "You can't got to school, accumulate $30-, $40- or $50,000 in debt and then go into an industry where you're going to have to start out at $8 or $12 an hour."