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15 unions worldwide have now signed an international agreement on defending education and employment standards in the context of global marketisation. Together, these unions represent more than half a million tertiary education workers around the world.

The deepening global recession and the cutting back of public provision will only give greater encouragement to a burgeoning private sector, making the international agreement only more relevant and important.

We are now turning this community of over 500,000 academics into something tangible.

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Legal Woes at the University of Phoenix

The largest for-profit university in the United States is reportedly prepared to spend more than $80 million to settle a six-year-old whistle-blowing case filed by former admissions officers.

The admissions officers allege the University of Phoenix obtained federal student aid under false pretenses.

In a news release issued October 27 by the University’s parent company, the Apollo Group, it was reported that $80.5 million was the “best estimate of the loss to be incurred in connection with this matter, including associated expenses.”

In response to concerns about student drop-out rates, the company also announced that it was instituting new procedures to improve retention.

Buried near the end of the news release was the announcement that the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission had begun an “informal inquiry” into how the Apollo Group reports its revenues to investors.

The Apollo Group also owns BPP Professional Education which in 2007 became the first for-profit degree provider in the U.K.

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