Daily Progress, Jacksonville, TX

Local News

July 5, 2012

LMC keeps accreditation despite bankruptcy

JACKSONVILLE — Officials with Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS) said they will work with Lon Morris College to keep its accreditation, although the college has filed for a voluntary Chapter 11 bankruptcy petition.

Dawn Ragan, chief restructuring officer with Bridgepoint Consulting, said filing the petition allows the college to concentrate on either finding a partner or consummating a transaction with another educational institution with some relief from creditors.

“Lon Morris continues to receive strong support from many of its creditors, as well as its faculty and employees, and the general community,” she said in a press release. “We are operating with core staff and continue to work on a modified academic program that will continue compliance with the SACS accreditation policies for the upcoming academic year.”

Dr. Belle Wheelan, president of SACS commission on colleges, said filing a Chapter 11 bankruptcy doesn't mean the institution is going out of business, but that it is restructuring its finances.

“It gives them a chance to look at the finances, restructure, and pay off bills without losing everything today,” she said. “Rather than having a company take over the institution or a piece of it in exchange for what it owes, this is saying, back off and give us a chance to regroup.”

The press release stated the timing of the filing was necessitated by a foreclosure proceeding on certain dormitories scheduled to proceed on Tuesday.

Wheelan said a college does not automatically lose accreditation just because it has filed for bankruptcy.

“We don't automatically drop an institution,” she said. “We give them time to work through the issues that face them. We base our loss of membership on continuance of non compliance of our principles.”

Weelan said Lon Morris College needs to comply with all SACS principles including the board being the active policy-making body for the institution, having adequate resources to support the mission of the school, auditing financial aid programs and exercising appropriate control over all its financial resources.

Weelan said because higher institutions cannot be treated like a business, the board is responsible for making sure the school is in compliance.

Ragan said summer online courses are currently being offered and will continued to be offered as there is a demand for them..

“The institution has to have students to still be in operation,” Weelan said. “But having students doesn't mean they have to be there in the summer. They can wait until the fall to get their act together. But this is why they need somebody familiar with higher education.”

At the beginning of May, the LMC board of trustees hired Bridgepoint, a reorganization firm, to analyze and restructure the two-year institution.

The board of trustees reviewed Brigepoint's assessment and determined an agreement with another institution would be best to continue the college's mission.

According to the press release, the college recently hired Capstone Partners to facilitate a transaction with another educational institution or strategic partner, which the school is trying to complete this summer.

The oldest private two-year college in Texas accumulated significant debt after it overextend itself in attempt to increase enrollment in 2010.

1
Text Only
Local News
  • Dispatcher Enge 0416.tif JPD dispatcher killed in wreck

    A dispatcher for the Jacksonville Police Department was killed Monday on her way to work, according to officials.
    Amber Enge, 35, of Whitehouse was pronounced dead at the scene of a one-vehicle wreck Monday afternoon on CR 2177 in Whitehouse.

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • CR speed limit changes, E-filling fee top agenda

    On Monday, Cherokee County commissioners set April 28 to hold public hearings concerning the changing speed limits on two county roads.

    April 16, 2014

  • Catherine look.tif Religious lines drawn: Protesters met by members of Church of Wells

    Other than a few community members' voices that rose above the crowd, the protest Saturday against the Church of Wells remained peaceful.

    April 15, 2014 3 Photos

  • HOPE event Pic 433.tif Folks attend weekend fundraiser for H.O.P.E.

    It was an evening fit for royalty, as supporters of the Helping Others Pursue Enrichment (H.O.P.E.) program gathered Saturday at The Castle on the Lake outside Jacksonville for “A Renaissance Evening.”

    April 15, 2014 1 Photo

  • Church Member looks.tif Church of Wells members attend protest

    About 30 members of the Church of Wells arrived at a protest Saturday. The event was planned after an incident at Wells Homecoming Day on April 5 where the church loudly "street preached" causing a disruption. Three of the church members were injured by two men at the parade. On Saturday, the event was peaceful, despite a few loud voices.

    See the complete story and photos in the next edition of the Daily Progress on Tuesday, April 15.

    April 13, 2014 1 Photo

  • ScholarshipAwards.tif 5 receive scholarships from Chamber’s Agri-Business Committee

    The Agri-Business Committee of the Jacksonville Chamber recently awarded five $1,000 scholarships at the Annual Cherokee County Junior Livestock Show on March 29.

    April 11, 2014 1 Photo

  • Deadline to file taxes nears

    As an April 15 deadline for individuals to file their 2013 federal tax return approaches, pressure is mounting for tax preparers.

    April 11, 2014

  • Protest, march planned in Wells

    The town of Wells is planning a march to the R&R Mercantile on U.S. Hwy. 69 from the former Dairy Queen to protest the Church of Wells.
    The event is planned for 1:30 p.m. Saturday.

    April 11, 2014

  • Court date set for JP hearing

    A court date has been reset to April 28 for a hearing of a petition by a local primary candidate in an upcoming Pct. 4 Justice of the Peace race.

    April 11, 2014

  • Luncheon to include update on Lake Columbia

    Updates on the proposed Lake Columbia will be the topic at the Jacksonville Chamber of Commerce luncheon.  
    Kelly Holcomb, general manager for Angelina Neches River Authority, will provide updated information on the proposed Lake Columbia between Jackson-ville and New Summerfield.

    April 11, 2014

LOCAL MAGAZINE
Election 2012
AP Video
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide