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Update on Arkansas YTT Regulations

December 22, 2014

As you know, the Arkansas State Board of Private Career Education (“SBPCE”) is requiring yoga teacher training programs (“YTTs”) in the state to be licensed. This new requirement is based on the SBPCE’s recent and novel determination that YTTs constitute “career education” and thus, are subject to regulation by the Board. Yoga teacher training programs across the state have already received letters from the SBPCE regarding these new requirements. Like you, Yoga Alliance® has significant concerns about these onerous and expensive licensing requirements, and we are committed to working with you to oppose this unnecessary regulation.

You may be aware that last week Yoga Alliance pushed back against a SBPCE’s efforts to impose regulations on YTTs. After a four-hour meeting, the Board chose not to reverse its position, and will likely move forward by sending YTTs another round of letters. These letters will inform YTTs that they should either apply for an exemption from the Board’s licensure requirement or apply for a license from the Board and comply with its regulations, which have yet to be written.

If you operate a YTT in Arkansas, you may receive one of these letters soon. If you feel comfortable doing do, please forward a copy to Yoga Alliance at info@yogaalliance.org.

Yoga Alliance firmly believes that the SBPCE’s decision is wrong, and is continuing its efforts to reverse the Board’s decision. We are preparing to take our case to the Arkansas General Assembly, and are working on a legislative solution that we anticipate will be introduced when the Assembly convenes in early 2015.

This legislation would make it clear that YTT programs are not career education, but rather a pursuit of self enhancement that is not subject to the SBPCE’s jurisdiction. When the time comes, we hope that we can count on your support to contact your elected members of the Arkansas General Assembly to encourage a vote in favor of this new law.

We know this is confusing, and that the SBPCE’s actions are frustrating and even frightening. We want to answer your questions about the steps Yoga Alliance has taken so far and what we are prepared to do going forward.

Yoga Alliance will host a virtual town hall meeting on January 6, 2015 at 2pm ET to allow you to meet our representatives in Arkansas and have your questions answered. Please take a moment to register for this virtual town hall meeting. After registering, you will receive a confirmation email with information about joining the webinar.

As you enjoy this holiday season, please know that Yoga Alliance stands with you against burdensome and unnecessary regulations by the state. We look forward to working with you to protect yoga instruction and the yoga community in the Arkansas.

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