HOUSTON - Lee College in Baytown is the target of a federal lawsuit claiming the school wrongfully cost three former nursing students their degrees, recent court documents say.

Sharon Jackson, Anita Parker and Rosemary Onyenaucheya assert they met all the written and stated requirements of Lee's associate degree nursing program to become registered nurses, but the defendant would not let them graduate because they apparently failed an exit examination "that was never listed as a graduation requirement."

The plaintiffs launched the litigation April 18 in the Houston Division of the Southern District of Texas.

They enrolled in the program between August 2010 and March 2011 with an expected graduation date of May 2012.

Lee previously administered one exit examination until the spring 2012 semester when it informed the graduating class that they would be required to ace two exams with an average scaled score of 2 in a range of 0-3.

According to the original petition, the college changed the grading scale several times.

While several have been able to meet the changing requirements, the suit states, the complainants "are among those who sat for every available test and attempted to meet every requirement, but fell slightly short of the mark."

The complaint further shows the plaintiffs' scaled scores were in the high 80s, which did not meet the passing criterion but was better than the graduating student averages for the past two years.

Such changes, policies and practices violated the complainants' due process rights, the suit says.

A jury trial is requested.

Attorney Ayesha G. Mutope-Johnson of Mutope-Johnson & Associates PLLC in Houston is representing the complainants.

Case No. 4:13-CV-1104

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