Alexandria, Va. — After Wednesday’s action involving a chiropractic accrediting agency, there was even more drama today at a meeting of the panel that advises the U.S. education secretary on accreditation issues. The National Advisory Committee on Institutional Quality and Integrity rejected the Education Department staff”s suggestion to deny continued recognition to the North Central Association Commission on Accreditation and School Improvement, which accredits about 190 nondegree-granting technical and vocational colleges in 19 states. The department’s staff had found nearly 60 areas where the accreditor had fallen short of federal requirements. Advisory committee members, however, will recommend that the education secretary give the organization 12 months to comply with the regulations—a goal they acknowledged is nearly herculean. They also made it clear that, after the grace period, they would vote to deny recognition if the group still could not satisfy the department’s requirements.