Request for Complaint Review

The Regulatory Compliance Division ("RCD") of the Tennessee Higher Education Commission has the authority to investigate complaints related to certain postsecondary educational institutions to determine whether an institution violated applicable state law, an institution’s internal policies, or State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement (SARA) policies.

RCD does NOT have the authority to review complaints:

    alleging a violation of federal laws or rules (including violations dealing with the
     administration or disbursement of Federal Student Aid);
    against Tennessee public institutions (unless the complaint concerns issues related to SARA and the student           resides out of state, is enrolled in a distance education program, and has exhausted the institution’s grievance         process;
   against K-12 institutions. 

For complaints against K-12 institutions, contact your local school board or the Tennessee Department of Education ("TNDOE"). The TNDOE main line is 615.741.5158 and the legal department is (615) 741-2921. The website is Education ( and a list of departments and contacts fis HERE.

Pursuant to Rule 1540-01-02-.19(9), any student who files a complaint with DPSA, must first exhaust the grievance process at the institution. Parties to the complaint shall be the complainant and any named institution or agent thereof.

To file a complaint, complete the Request for Complaint Review form.  To authorize another individual with whom RCD may discuss your complaint with or you are filing the complaint on behalf of the student, complete the Complaint Information Release Authorization and include it with the Request for Complaint Review form.

If you have questions regarding the complaint process, you should email Be sure to include a telephone number so we can call you if necessary.