Archive for Wednesday, October 24, 1990

REGENTS GROUP TO ADVOCATE MARGIN FUNDING

October 24, 1990

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The Kansas Board of Regents will assemble a 25-member committee to advocate passage by the Kansas Legislature of the Margin of Excellence and qualified admissions for state universities.

"The group will be called upon to work during the (1991 legislative) session," Stanley Koplik, regents executive director, said Tuesday. "The purpose is to expand the advocacy group."

The special committee will comprise individuals who have "expressed a commitment to public higher education," Koplik said. The panel will be named before the end of the year.

In the past, regents recommended each university organize a lobbying committee to support higher education inititatives. The new committee will be under the auspices of regents.

The Margin of Excellence is a three-year program formulated by regents to improve faculty salaries and operating budgets at the six state universities, including Kansas University.

Legislators passed funding for the initial two years of the program, but didn't approve money for the third year. The $15 million proposal will be renewed in the next session.

Regents have tried for several years to convince state lawmakers to end a policy that allows all graduates of accredited Kansas high schools to enroll in any of the state's six universities.

The Kansas House narrowly rejected the regents' qualified admissions plan last session, which supporters say would make Kansas high school graduates better prepared for college work.

Legislators and educators who believe the longstanding policy of open admissions should be retained say the plan forwarded by regents will reduce educational opportunities in Kansas.

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