(JD Hall – Pulpit & Pen) Masters University, the school associated with Grace Community Church and the esteemed John MacArthur, has been placed on probation by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC). According to WASC, there are a number of deficiencies that Masters must improve upon for them to come out from under their probationary status.
Reportedly, the four areas of concern for WASC include board independence, personnel and management practice, operational integrity and leadership. Chiefly, the greatest cause of complaint, as stated by WASC, is included below…
“The institution does not meet the WSCUC requirement for governing board independence since many members of the Board are employed by the institution or another organization for which the president has authority.
There was a concern by the accrediting agency that Dr. MacArthur apparently wields too much power (so they think) because trustees of the board are also a part of the church, of which Dr. MacArthur is pastor. Before anyone accuses Masters of anything sinister (too late, the survivor blog gals are all over it), the problem for WASC is that board members at Masters belong to or serve Grace Community Church in some other capacity. This should be expected in an educational institution that is associated with a church. The only other solution is to have Masters guided by people not held accountable in some degree by the church (which is accountable to elder leadership that includes Dr. MacArthur). In reality, there are many hundreds (if not thousands) of church-associated schools and colleges whose pastors also serve as president, dean or director and whose board members serve the associated church. This is hardly scandalous, but for WACS it appears to (suddenly) create a conflict of interest. There seems to be quite a disparity here between how Masters is being treated by WASC and other accredited institutions that operate in similar common-sensical ways. I’ll remind you that Masters has been operating this way for decades, without concern by WASC until now.