Authorization for the program (even more so in version 12) is very much tied to your logging into the program with your Adobe ID.
It's possible you can work offline once you've logged in and authorized the software. But you'll at least need to be online to do that for the first time on any computer.
I'm now thinking that it is related to the "Documents\Adobe\Premiere Elements\11.0" folder and it containing the default locations for the ScratchDisks. (what else does the program rely on from this location?) Our schools redirect "Documents" to their network drive which is pretty standard practice in an enterprise environment. Thus no network drives when offline. District policy doesn't allow for making files available offline for these Documents folders.
With Premiere working online, going to Edit, Preferences, ScratchDisks - Captured Video, Audio, etc. setting can all be directed to a local C:\ folder but still the program will not open offline.
So the question now is; Is there a regkey, option, magic lever or way to disassociate the program from the Documents folder and have all of it's components working from the local hard drive?