That accreditation is a barrier to entry--enforcing inappropriate input and process requirements--is bad. That a consequence of this is the suppression of innovation is unforgivable. Figuring out how to educate more students with less money is perhaps the most important national goal right now, and it requires innovation, but accreditation sabotages the necessary innovation. It is time to redesign the accreditation system.Thanks, Instapundit.
Finally, Accreditation in Question
Accreditation agencies play a critical role in the maintenance of the current ponderous structure of the US K-PhD school industry. These agencies deserve far more scrutiny than they normally receive, given the cost of the current system. US taxpayers spend over $700 billion per year to operate this system. In the school year 2008-2009, NCES reported $593 billion K-12 and $267 billion post-secondary, according to the US Department of Education. This figure does not include the opportunity cost to students of the time that they spend in school. It does not include lost lifetime income to poorly-educated students or losses due to crime committed by drop-outs with few decent career options. It does not include the cost to society of the lost innovation that a competitive market in education services would generate. Finally, someone pays attention.