Talk about putting an institution between a rock and a hard place. North Idaho College’s regional accreditation is in jeopardy as a result of its Board Chair’s alleged actions.
According to an article in The Spokesman-Review, there are multiple complaints about his aggressive, threatening, and unprofessional behavior toward the college president, employees and trustees. In one case, the president himself reportedly saw this man physically assault a female college employee at a college-sponsored event in 2019.
A damning article published in the Chronicle of Higher Education provided details about just how bad things are for the College. It speaks to the role that local politics are playing and apparently North Idaho College has become the pawn in a political battleground.
Formal complaints have been filed about other Board actions that seem to be in violation of accrediting regulations. And now, the institution must somehow mount a defense and try to convince their regional accreditor why they shouldn’t lose their accreditation. If that happens, the doors to that college close.
All because of one man and a political agenda.
The College’s Board of Trustees had better think long and hard about the consequences of continuing to support this Chair.
If North Idaho College loses its accreditation and the institution is forced to close, the entire region will be negatively impacted. Business owners will have a harder time finding a qualified workforce pool. Restaurants, gas stations, and other retail stores will have fewer customers with cash in their pockets. Consequently, the overall quality of life will suffer.
The time is quickly approaching for the Board to make a decision regarding which is more important, advancing their political agenda or keeping the College open? They can’t have it both ways. Talk about being between a rock and a hard place.
About the Author: Dr. Roberta Ross-Fisher has expertise in higher education quality assurance, educator preparation, and competency-based education. A former public school teacher and college administrator, Roberta is now an educational consultant specializing in the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP).