Austin-area trade schools close with little notice

AUSTIN (KXAN) — Students are finding out Capitol City Trade and Technical School and other schools are now shut down. Morgan Oppel went to Allied Health Careers, which is one of the schools that closed.

“I was going to become a medical assistant,” said Morgan.

Morgan studied for tests and prepared for labs. Still, all that didn’t prepare Morgan for Wednesday.

“We were told that the school was closing and shutting its doors and we weren’t supposed to come back tomorrow,” Morgan said. “Shocked. I was very shocked and disappointed. Upset. Very upset.”

The Texas Workforce Commission confirmed it got notice that these schools would be shutting down Wednesday:

  • Capitol City Trade and Technical School
  • Allied Health Careers
  • Capitol City Careers
  • Southwest Institute of Technology

The website for Allied Health Careers has this statement:

“After decades of service educating students, Allied Health Careers, has closed due to economic circumstances. A great deal of effort went into finding alternatives to this decision but it simply could not be avoided. Representatives of the Texas Workforce Commission, Career Colleges and Schools Division, are assisting our students with this transition. They may be contacted at 512-936-3100.”

Morgan says the teachers at her school didn’t know this was happening.

“They were shocked,” said Morgan. “They were crying when they heard.”

“I’m just a little upset about it and I would like to talk to somebody up there that knows what’s going to happen,” said Ray Rainwater, Morgan’s grandfather.

The Texas Workforce Commission also reports that representatives visited the schools and are helping students and staff with their options.

The Texas Workforce Commission provided KXAN News with this information for students:

TWC encourages students to call the TWC Career Schools and Colleges hotline at 866-256-6333 (prompt #1) or at 512-936-3100, or email at career.schools@twc.state.tx.us.
The best option for students faced with a school closure is to continue their course of studies and obtain their certificate or degree. This may involve a transfer to another school. TWC Career School representatives are communicating with students about any possible transfers.
Students may be able to transfer credits to another school offering similar courses. Students should contact other schools directly to find out about transfer eligibility. Students considering transfer may also want to visit the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board Web site. If students choose to transfer schools, then any arrangement that the student makes is determined by the new school, which will also determine what courses the student will need to take and any additional tuition costs.
If continuing studies is not possible, students may consider other options, including discharge of their federal student loans, or requesting a refund of tuition.
Discharge of Loan
If students don’t complete their studies or transfer and they’ve received a federally subsidized loan, they may be eligible to have the loan discharged. Students should contact their lender or the U.S. Department of Education at 1-800-4-FEDAID to obtain more information, including a loan-discharge application. If the Texas Guaranteed Student Loan Corporation guaranteed the loan, contact them at 1-800-845-6267 or via e-mail at cust.assist@tgslc.org.
School Refund
Students can make a written request for a refund of tuition from the school. The TWC Career Schools and Colleges program investigates whether closing schools may have violated state law. If so, students may be eligible for a refund of all or part of tuition and other costs, such as book charges. More information on the refund policy for a particular school can be found in the school’s catalog and/or enrollment agreement.
Tuition Trust Account
The Tuition Protection Fund was created by the Texas Legislature in 1989 to protect students of a licensed school from tuition loss if the school closes. As with bonds, the money available from the fund is limited, and may not provide full refunds. Again, students should ensure the Career Schools and Colleges program has the information needed to contact them by mail and/or telephone.
The U.S. Department of Education also provides information on its website on Closed School Guide.
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