The Education Department will reportedly allow two for-profit colleges to convert to nonprofit colleges.
The sales of the schools — Kaplan University and the Art Institutes — were approved by the Education Department, according to emails obtained by BuzzFeed News.
Kaplan is being bought by Purdue University in a deal brought about by former Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels (R), who now serves as Purdue’s president.
The Art Institutes, which is owned by EDMC, is being purchased by the Dream Center, a nonprofit with Christian roots, according to BuzzFeed.
The Education Department said “it does not see any impediment to EDMC’s request for approval of the change in ownership or its request for approval of nonprofit institution status.”
The move to allow these conversions could signal a change in the way these deals are looked at under Education Secretary Betsy DeVos.
Last year, the Obama administration did not allow for the conversion of one for-profit to nonprofit college. At the time, former Education Secretary John King said the move should send a signal.
“This should send a clear message to anyone who thinks converting to nonprofit status is a way to avoid oversight while hanging onto the financial benefits: don’t waste your time,” he said.