Corinthian Colleges

(COCO)

said the

Securities and Exchange Commission

is conducting an informal inquiry into the education company's stock option grants.

The Santa Ana, Calif., company said it is cooperating with the SEC in its inquiry. Corinthian last month formed a panel of independent directors to review the option matter.

Corinthian also has been served with two shareholder derivative actions filed in Orange County, Calif., Superior Court. The complaints name the company as a nominal defendant and a number of current and former directors and officers as defendants.

The complaints allege that the current and former director and officer defendants breached their fiduciary duties with respect to certain historical stock option grants.

Corinthian fell 9 cents early Friday to $12.75.