Watching a Watchdog

Pat McMahon Contributor
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WASHINGTON — Media organizations like to tout the firewalls that exist between the news and editorial pages, and the newsroom and the business staff, but when it comes to the editorial independence of The Washington Post on issues related to Kaplan, Inc., some critics are arguing that the walls aren’t strong enough.

The concerns arise from editorial stands and direct lobbying by a leader of the legendary Graham family — someone who would get an open door in any Congressional office — on behalf of for-profit higher ed.

On Sunday, policy makers, higher education watchers and ordinary readers opened their newspapers and Web browsers to an editorial endorsed by the Post’s staff board that took a stance that could’ve come right out of Kaplan’s playbook.

After disclosing the corporate link — noting that the paper is owned by the same company that “owns Kaplan University and other for-profit schools of higher education that, according to company officials, could be harmed by the proposed regulations” — the editorial bashed the U.S. Department of Education’s proposed rules, voicing concerns about access for low-income and working students, and worrying more broadly about how the country could meet President Obama’s higher education goals without for-profit colleges.

Full story: News: Watching a Watchdog – Inside Higher Ed