Student Complaint Procedures

A student must exhaust the internal grievance/complaint procedures of the Institution or School before making a complaint to the State Board of Education (SBOE) or the Accrediting Agency.

Complaints about Idaho public institutions of higher education: (SBOE Governing Policies & Procedures III.P.18) Students may refer complaints about public institutions to the Board's Chief Academic Officer, 208-334-2270.

Complaints about private institutions or proprietary schools operating in Idaho (IDAPA 08.01.11-500)

Complaints about schools that maintain a physical presence in Idaho may fall into one of the categories summarized below:

  1. State Consumer Protection Laws.  Such complaints should be referred to the Attorney General's Consumer Affairs Division under IDAPA 04.02.01, Idaho Rules of Consumer Protection.  Their complaint forms may be found on the AG's web pages.

  2. State Laws or Rules Related to the Registration of Postsecondary Educational Institutions and Proprietary Schools.   Complaints regarding proper registration of institutions or schools are submitted in writing to the Board's Executive Director or his designee for investigation and appropriate enforcement action. To obtain complaint forms: Contactl the State Coordinator.

  3. Quality of Education, or Other Matters

    a. Complaints about quality of education provided or accreditation matters are submitted in writing to the Executive Director or his designee for review and appropriate action.  To obtain complaint forms: Contact the Coordinator.

    b. The Executive Director may refer matters of accreditation or quality of education provided  to the accrediting agency of the institution or school at issue.  If it is not successfully resolved there, then the Executive Director or his designee will review the Accreditor's recommendations and follow the procedures described the subsections below. 

    NOTE: The student/complainant may choose to send their complaint directly to the accrediting agency without first coming to the Executive Director/SBOE.  This is the preferred option since the Accreditor's usually have a more direct impact on institutional procedures.

    c. Complaints about operations or other practices of an institution or school will be reviewed to see if it is within the regulatory authority of the SBOE.  

    • If it is not, Board staff will notify the complainant in writing of such determination, and may offer referral to another more appropriate agency.
    • If the complaint is within the Board's regulatory authority, Board staff will notify both the complainant and the institution or school about how they are to respond and what the applicable timelines are.
    • Review and investigation of complaints will occur as expeditiously as possible.  Any/All parties may be asked to respond in writing to staff questions, to submit to interviews, and to provide additional records, documents, statements, or other collateral information, as necessary. 
    • Any request by the investigator for additional information must be provided promptly.  After the Board’s investigator reviews all materials submitted by all parties an investigation report will be prepared.  The report will contain a summary of allegations, the investigator’s findings, and a recommendation(s) to the Executive Director for disposition of the case.
    • If it is determined that a probable violation of law or rule did occur, then the Executive Director shall issue a written decision about the complaint.  
    • Within thirty (30) days after a decision is issued, any party who disagrees may make a written request for the Executive Director to hold a hearing on the matter. The provisions of the Idaho Administrative Procedure Act, chapter 52, title 67, Idaho Code, shall apply to such hearing and to any subsequent judicial review of the decision.

d. If a complaint concerns an institution or school that is exempt from registration under law or rules, and such institution or school has not elected to voluntarily register, then the institution or school shall be responsible for reimbursing the Board office for the actual costs incurred to process and act upon such complaints.

Private Postsecondary & Proprietary Schools Coordinator

Valerie Fenske Email




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