Heald College parent company owes misled students

Students of Rancho Cordova, Roseville campuses among those affected by $1.1 billion judgment against Corinthian

California Attorney General Kamala Harris won a big ruling last week against the now-defunct Corinthian Colleges, forcing the for-profit company to pay $1.1 billion to former students for false advertising and predatory lending practices.

Harris filed a suit in 2013 claiming Corinthian Colleges and its subsidiaries intentionally targeted low-income Californians by misrepresenting post-graduation job opportunities and job placement rates. This includes the local Heald College campuses in Rancho Cordova, Roseville, Stockton and Modesto.

Among other things, the court stated some of the data the education company published were “systematically false, misleading, erroneous” and didn’t comply with state and federal regulations.

“This judgment sends a clear message: There is a cost to this kind of predatory conduct,” Harris said in a statement.

The ruling ordered $820 million in restitution for former students and $350 million in civil penalties. The attorney general’s office created a website (https://oag.ca.gov/corinthian) for affected students.

Meanwhile, the Federal Trade Commission recently filed a similar suit against DeVry Education Group, a company whose board UC Davis Chancellor Linda Katehi recently stepped down from following controversy over her moonlighting practices. The FTC claims DeVry has also been participating in predatory lending practices for years.