Online Learning Update

May 2, 2012

Consumers warned about online diploma mills

Filed under: Online Learning News — Ray Schroeder @ 12:10 am

By: ZACHARY REID, Richmond Times-Dispatch

The Better Business Bureau has a little advice for would-be students looking for help earning a high school diploma: Don’t get taken to school on your way to school. They’re warning Richmond-area consumers to be on the lookout for online schools offering classes that supposedly lead to legitimate degrees. “Don’t believe it,” said Tom Gallagher, president and chief executive officer of the Better Business Bureau serving central Virginia. “If it looks that easy, don’t believe it.” He said that inquiries about supposedly Richmond-based schools have come from outside the area — more than 30 in the last month for two schools, 100 in the last year for a third — but that area consumers are at risk, too. “They look real and they sound real,” he said. “They say they’re accredited, but they can just make that up.” So far, customers have been asked to pay $99 to $1,600 for the classes at online schools calling themselves Alford, Belford and McHill high schools.

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