Jefferson High School, Belford High School, and Belford University sound as real as any learning institution — except diplomas from these online "schools" aren't recognized by anyone. The Better Business Bureau is familiar with the names after receiving complaints about the programs, which offer diplomas after paying for and taking a single online test, but these diplomas are far from genuine.
People seeking to improve their lives stumble upon scammy online schools while searching for alternative ways to earn high school diplomas and even medical degrees. Diane Cerulli received a diploma from Belford University after taking an online multiple choice test based on "life experience" and sending in a check for $1,400. She received a letter from the school after completing the test that stated: "You are now a doctor. Diplomas and paperwork will be mailed to you after you pay $1,400 for the degree."
Now, Cerulli understands she was scammed and said, "Today, my rational thinking is in full bloom, and I could get into a lot of trouble if I put a shingle up and called myself a doctor." Common sense should tell us that if something is too good to be true, it probably is, but sometimes hope gets the best of people. Before you shell out a dime, check the Better Business Bureau and the US Department of Education to see if a school is accredited.