Approval Process

Legal Statement

The Code of Alabama Section 46-16-1 through 10 provides that the Alabama Community College System  (formerly Alabama Department of Postsecondary Education) has approval /licensing authority for for-profit/proprietary vocational/technical school, non-degree-granting proprietary schools and non-accredited degree-granting institutions. No proprietary postsecondary school, unless otherwise exempted, shall operate within the State of Alabama unless the school first secures a Private School License. These licenses are based on recognized educational standards and practices; and are valid for a two year period.

Approval Process

In Alabama, approval to offer courses of instruction in residence, online, mail or otherwise involves a 2-step process with 2 separate agencies, 1) Alabama Community College System (ACCS) and 2) Alabama Commission on Higher Education (ACHE).

The Private School License application must be submitted using the online system located in the quick links section or by clicking on online application. You will need to register as a new user prior to beginning the application.  All required documents can be uploaded to the online application.

To apply with ACHE, please refer to their website and link to the red drop down box on the left entitle Non-Resident Institutions and access the Application for a Single Institution/Application for Multiple Public Institutions, Section One: Procedures will provide information on what is required.

ACCS approves Certificates of Exemption upon request; please see the Exemption Section for more information.

Code of Alabama Section

  Section 16-46-2 Declaration Policy
  Section 16-46-5 License for operation of schools; fees; financial stability

2011 Legislative Amendments to Private School License Statute

The Private School License statute, Code of Alabama Chapter 46, Section 16-46-1 through 10, was amended in the 2011 Legislative Session. Primarily the amendment changes exemption requirements for postsecondary private schools. Click here to review ACT No. 2011-296.


  Agent Permit Application Form PS-4
  CCNH Transcript Request Form
  Transcript Request Form
  Agents Bond Form
  Performance Bond Form Driving School
  Performance Bond Form Degree
  Performance Bond Form Non-Degree
  Private School Licensure Fee Schedule & Form


Additional Information

  Guidelines for Private School License
  2013 Out of State Institutions Offering Nursing Programs in Alabama
  Tips for Recognizing a Fraudulent Institution