Gov. Perry touts higher education goals
Gov. Rick Perry is slowly laying out more specifics of his higher education plan.
Last month, the governor said he would like to see a four-year tuition freeze for college freshmen. Monday, he formally took that message on the road by speaking at a Dallas high school.
Perry also renewed his call for a $10,000 bachelor degree and a push to get students to graduation within four years.
"I’m calling for a four-year tuition freeze for incoming freshmen for a four-year period of time,” Gov. Perry said. “So there's stability, there's predictability of that young person's outlay of cash from that university. Not only will this give students cost certainty heading into their education, it also will provide a powerful incentive for you to get in, get out in that four-year period of time."
One of Perry's proposals includes tying some state funding to graduation rates.
University of Texas President Bill Powers says he was heartened by the conversation Perry's proposal started, but has not endorsed it yet.
Statement from Austin Community College:
”Community colleges are the most affordable institutions of higher education and offer the increasingly marketable associate degree as well as an affordable pathway to a bachelor’s degree. ACC is committed to providing open-door access to higher education, moving students through the pipeline in a timely way, and giving them the tools they need to graduate and be successful.
Statement from University of Texas Chancellor Cigarroa:
“We’re very pleased that Governor Perry is focusing on issues of critical importance to the future of higher education in our state and to The University of Texas System. Like the governor, the UT System Board of Regents and I are committed to improving student access and success and increasing productivity and efficiency throughout our system. These are strong areas of focus that are addressed in our Framework for Advancing Excellence and we are actively working on those initiatives. Already, two UT institutions – UT Dallas and UT El Paso – allow students to lock in tuition rates for four years. Soon all UT institutions will offer students and parents a financial disclosure statement that shows them how much their college education will cost them over four, five or six years and what they can save by graduating on time.
“We are working diligently at the UT System to implement the Framework and transform higher education in Texas as well as serving as a leader for innovation around the country. Our goal is to improve student success and enhance excellence across our mission in higher education and at the same time make college more affordable. Every student in Texas who has the ambition and drive to pursue higher education should have the chance to do so.”