Institutions in a SARA state with state approval may also offer distance education and/or programs for any other SARA member. While she supports California`s membership in SARA, Soares said the process will not be easy. Beyond the opposition of consumer advocates, California is one of the few states where there is no higher education coordinating body to lead a legislative initiative. The creation of such an organization would be necessary to allow California to join SARA, since a state organization must decide which institutions may or may not join SARA. The organization must also review and resolve all complaints against accredited institutions. When the state authorization agreement was reached in 2013, few could have imagined that five years later, almost all U.S. states would be involved. Any U.S.-based entity, established in the United States, that has appropriate authorization from Congress, a state or a state-recognized indian tribe and has the accreditation of an accreditation company recognized by the U.S. Department of Education is entitled to apply for SARA participation in its home state, if that state is a member of SARA.
To be eligible for SARA exploitation, distance education must be established in the United States or in the United States. SARA (State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement) is an agreement between Member States that sets comparable national standards for the intergovernmental provision of distance-based post-secondary courses and programmes. SARA applies only to distance education, which is not provided on ground or group activities (NCS 3 (4) and focuses solely on distance learning in the United States, which crosses national borders. SARA members are states that are not institutions or students. Sara does not replace state authorization and only state-accredited institutions can operate under SARA. SARA refers to the authorisation of courses and distance programmes delivered across national borders by institutions that already have admission to higher education in at least one state. States have the opportunity to become SARA members through their regional pact. There are four regional pacts, including: Midwestern Higher Education Compact (MHEC), New England Board of Higher Education (NEBHE, Southern Regional Education Board (SREB) and Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education (WICHE).