July 21, 2015 Commission Meeting
To view this information as a pdf, click the link: COMTA Actions – July 2015
The Commission on Massage Therapy Accreditation (COMTA) has concluded its July 21, 2015 Commission Meeting.
By action of the Commission, the following schools have received:
Revocation of Accreditation:
Yellowstone Institute of Massage Therapy – (Billings, MT) – For details, see below
Placed on Show Cause:
Academy of Natural Therapy – (Greeley, CO) – For details, see below
Continued Show Cause:
Educating Hands School of Massage – (Miami, FL) – For details, see below
- Virginia School of Massage – Massage Therapy Program – (Charlottesville, VA) – For details, see below
Approval of Name Change:
Sage School of Massage and Esthetics, LLC (Bend, OR)
Formerly Sage School of Massage, LLC
Addition of New Program:
- Sage School of Massage and Esthetics LLC (Bend, OR)
The Commission granted interim approval to the school to add an esthetics program, pending completion of a Self-Study Report and site visit.
Notification of Teach-Out/Closure:
- Baker College – Therapeutic Massage Program, Owosso Campus (Owosso, MI)
The Commission Executive Committee approved the program’s Teach-Out Plan, effective August 29, 2015. The college’s Therapeutic Massage programs located on the Allen Park, Cadillac, Clinton Township, Jackson, and Muskegon campuses will remain open and accredited.
- New Mexico Academy of the Healing Arts (Santa Fe, NM)
The Commission Executive Committee approved the school’s Teach-Out Plan, effective September 26, 2015. The school will notify the Commission on its operational status at that time and whether it will close or continue operation.
Please note: Renewal schools placed on show cause, probation or deferral are considered accredited institutions.
- Yellowstone Institute of Massage Therapy – (Billings, MT)
The Yellowstone Institute of Massage Therapy received initial institutional accreditation from the Commission on Massage Therapy on April 9, 2015, following a six-month deferment to gather additional compliance verification. The initial grant of accreditation was conditional, pending further document on seven (7) standards.
Since the April letter was sent notifying the school of its accredited status, COMTA staff received no communication from the institution, despite several attempts via email, phone and certified mail. This includes the required submission of evidence that the school has added COMTA to its complaint procedure within 30 days of accreditation.
On June 17, 2015, COMTA staff again tried to contact the institution and learned that the institution’s phone had been disconnected.
On June 18, 2015 COMTA staff sent a certified letter to the institution identifying July 1, 2015 as a deadline for reply before revocation of accreditation was considered. This letter was reported by the United States Postal Service as undeliverable. The letter was also forwarded to the institution owner, but there has been no response.
Because of the lack of response from the owner, the Commission is unaware of the school’s current operational status. Accreditation has been revoked effective immediately.
- Academy of Natural Therapy – (Greely, CO)
At the August 2012 meeting, the Commission acted to accept the 2011 annual report with a status of Probation pending the improvement of the total current assets to total current liabilities ratio, a measure of financial stability.
At the August 2013 meeting, the Commission reviewed the school’s 2012 annual report and acted to continue the probation status and defer the decision on the 2012 annual report pending response to a few conditions. At its January 2014 meeting, the Commission reviewed the school’s response and acted to accept the 2012 annual report and continue the probation status pending review of the regularly scheduled 2013 annual report to evaluate progress on meeting the total current assets to total current liabilities minimum ratio.
At its October 2014 meeting, the Commission reviewed the school’s 2013 annual report and accompanying materials and acted to accept the 2013 annual report and continue the probation status from August 2012 for low ratio of current assets to current liabilities as demonstrated by financial audits. The school was granted an extension for good cause based on internally prepared financial statements.
At its July 21, 2015 meeting, the Commission reviewed the school’s 2014 audited financial statements and compliance audit. Based on the materials submitted for review, the Commission has acted to accept the FY2014 financial report and place the school on Show Cause for continued low financial stability, and continue the condition on the 1,000 hour program for completion rates below the COMTA threshold.
The institution has noted a number of actions being taken to reduce expenses, yet the changes have not yet translated into clear improvements in financial stability as of the December 2014 audit. The Commission is granting an additional extension for good cause to allow these changes to be reflected in an official audited financial statement for the year ending December 31, 2015. The school is required to get an expedited 2015 audit to the Commission by April 1, 2016 in time for the school’s renewal decision.
- Educating Hands School of Massage – (Miami, FL)
At its October 2014 meeting, the Commission acted to place the institution on probation until the 2013 Annual Report and all applicable late fees were submitted and accepted by the Commission. The annual report had been due July 1, 2014 and was to be submitted immediately. The Commission’s repeated attempts at communication went unanswered by the institution. Thus at its January 2015 meeting, the Commission acted to place the institution on Show Cause until the 2013 annual report and all applicable late fees, were submitted and reviewed by the Commission. The institution had 30 days to submit all information or face immediate Revocation of accreditation.
The institution submitted the annual report, reviewed financial statements and late fees by the deadline as required. At its April 3, 2015 meeting, the Commission reviewed the institution’s 2013 annual report submission, as well as its new Change of Location application submitted March 25, 2015. The Commission acted to accept the 2013 annual report, grant interim approval for the new location and extend Show Cause pending timely submission of the institution’s 2014 reviewed financial statements and jurisdictional approval.
At its recent July 21, 2015 meeting, the Commission reviewed the institution’s materials and has acted to extend the Show Cause until October 2015, pending receipt of the 2014 reviewed financial statement and all outstanding items and late fees no later than August 15, 2015 and a site visit to be completed by September 30, 2015. If the deadlines are met, the Commission will review the information and make a decision on the institution’s status at its October 2015 meeting.
- Virginia School of Massage – Massage Therapy Program (Charlottesville, VA)
The program had conditions placed on its 2011 and 2012 annual reports for low completion and placement rates. It had a deadline of August 2014 to bring the rates into compliance with the minimum threshold of 65%.
At its October 2014 meeting, the Commission reviewed the program’s 2013 annual report and acted to accept the 2013 Annual Report and place the program on probation for continued low completion and placement rates, as well as not notifying the Commission of Campus Director change.
At its January 2015 meeting, the Commission reviewed the program’s interim report and accepted the Campus Director information and placement rate improvement plan, but did not accept the improvement plan for low completion rates. The probation status was continued with an additional status of Show Cause. The program has already exceeded the maximum timeframe allowed for meeting the minimum threshold for completion rates. However, the Commission noted that there had been some improvement in the rates reported and granted an extension to see if further improvement could be demonstrated in the most recent groups of students.
At its recent July 21, 2015 meeting, the Commission reviewed the program’s interim report and has acted to accept the interim report and extend Show Cause and the maximum timeframe for good cause until December 2015 when the Commission will collect updated completion and placement rates using the new COMTA reporting procedures and newly implemented COMTA Student Outcomes Tracking policy. At that time, the program will report on students who started between, July 1, 2014 and June 30, 2015. This extension will also allow time for the improvements described in the interim report to be realized. The maximum extension for good cause deadline was to be August 2015. However, due to the Commission reconsidering the system to review and evaluate student outcomes, this deadline will be extended to December 2015.