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It Oversaw For-Profit Colleges That Imploded. Now It Seeks a Comeback.

The organization at the center of one of the largest fraud scandals in the history of for-profit colleges is planning a comeback.

The Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools was stripped of its powers in December 2016 amid the collapse of two for-profit university chains, where tens of thousands of students were encouraged to take on hundreds of millions in debt based on false promises, including jobs after graduation.

The ordeal left thousands of students stranded, and many have since flooded the Education Department with applications for relief from student loan debt. The Obama administration approved about 32,000 claims totaling $449 million.