Summary: Mississippi School of Therapeutic Massage

Posted by: LaToshya Vaughn    |    Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Summary of Revocation: Mississippi School of Therapeutic Massage

At its September 2011 meeting, the Commission acted to revoke accreditation for one of our COMTA accredited schools, the Mississippi School of Therapeutic Massage in Jackson, MS based on failure to comply with Commission deadlines and requirements of the Probation status which began January 2011. In response to the Commission’s decision, the school requested an appeal on September 22, 2011.

As described on page 9 of the COMTA’s policies and procedures manual for an appeals process, once COMTA is notified by the school requesting an appeal, we must select a pool of candidates with knowledge of accreditation standards, policies, procedures, and purposes, established by COMTA to serve as the source of members for an Appeal committee. Below are the individuals who served on the committee and their participating roles:

  • Monique Baucham – Public Member
  • Wendy Weiner – Academic Representative
  • Elizabeth Hepler – administrator within the scope of COMTA approved institutions
  • Pete Whitridge – practitioner within the scope of COMTA approved institutions
  • Deby Grant – educator within the scope of COMTA approved institutions

The Appeal Hearing took place on January 9, 2012 in Hanover, MD and the Appeal committee affirmed the decision of the Commission to revoke the accreditation of the Mississippi School of Therapeutic Massage. The revocation was effective immediately and Mississippi School of Therapeutic Massage is no longer accredited by COMTA.

The Appeal committee carefully reviewed the findings of the accrediting Commission, the record on appeal and the testimony of the presenter at the appeal hearing and found that the Commission’s findings were supported by the record and were not erroneous. MSTM did not introduce any evidence, either in written record or during the hearing, to refute the Commission’s findings, nor did MSTM present any new information that could have been considered under COMTA’s Policies and Procedures. MSTM did not assert that relevant, existing facts had not been presented to the Commission because of misunderstanding on the part of the institution; or submit new significant financial information bearing materially on the Commission’s findings with respect to the school’s financial position, or supply evidence that the school had not had an adequate opportunity to make its position known to the Commission. On the contrary, the Appeal Panel found considerable evidence in the record that MSTM had received many opportunities over many months to provide responsive information to the Commission’s compliance concerns but failed to do so.

Reason for Revocation:

In accordance with COMTA policies, the school has been given an opportunity to supply official comment to post along with the Commission’s reason for revocation. The school did not supply a comment.

The Commission revoked accreditation based on failure to demonstrate financial stability in accordance with Standard Financial statements specifically and clearly demonstrate a ratio of current assets to current liabilities of at least 1:1.  

As of the last communications with the school owner in January 2012, he planned to continue operation. The school did not have an approved Teach Out plan in case of needing to close due to loss of accreditation. Questions about the school should be directed to the institution or to the state agency which approves their operation:

Mississippi School of Therapeutic Massage
1935 A. Lakeland Dr.
Jackson , MS 39216
(601) 362-3624


Mississippi State Board of Massage Therapy
PO Box 20, 
Morton, MS 39117
Phone: 601.732.6038 

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