Topeka Kansas University has submitted a new tuition proposal, but officials on Tuesday refused to release any information about it.
KU spokeswoman Lynn Bretz said release of the proposal was up to the Kansas Board of Regents, and regents spokesman Kip Peterson said that information would remain secret until presented to the regents at a meeting Thursday. That is also the meeting where the regents are scheduled to take final action on tuition increases.
“It has been the board practice not to release them (tuition increase proposals) until presented to the board,” Peterson said.
In May, under KU’s original proposal, incoming freshmen, who are Kansas residents, would pay 5.3 percent more in tuition and fees than the in-state freshman class of last year. This is based on a 15-credit hour course load.
The cost would be $4,068 compared with $3,862 -- an increase of $206, according to information provided by the regents, which apparently is now out-dated. The nonresident freshmen would see a 5.7 percent increase, from $9,454 to $9,997, or $543.
KU has instituted a compact system under which the tuition rate for incoming freshmen is fixed for four years.
Since the compact system started in fall 2007, more and more students are included and therefore don’t see annual increases. So, 40 percent of undergraduates will see no increase.
But there are still some students not included in the compact, generally seniors and transfer students. Their tuition and fees would have risen 3.5 percent for Kansas residents and 3.8 percent for out-of-state residents, under the initial plan.
In-state graduate students would have seen an increase of 3.5 percent in tuition and fees and 4 percent at KU’s School of Medicine. Nonresident graduate students would have seen an increase of 3.8 percent and 4 percent at KU Med.
But since May, KU, Emporia State University and Wichita State University have submitted revised proposals.
Higher education officials have warned of tuition increases after the Legislature cut school funding in the recently completed legislative session.
At one point last spring, regents tried to deal with the Legislature, saying they would freeze tuition rates for one year, if lawmakers would cut the budget by no more than 7 percent and allow some flexibility in the use of federal stimulus funds. But the saw went deeper and, in response, the universities have proposed increasing tuition.
KU leaders have emphasized that the budget cuts aren’t being made up totally with increased tuition.
KU has cut some jobs, reduced course offerings and found efficiencies, the university says.
“We’ve said from the start that college must remain affordable for students and their families, especially during this recession,” KU Chancellor Robert Hemenway said.
Under the first round of proposals, for in-state undergraduates, Kansas State University proposed a 3.7 percent increase; Wichita State, 5.5 percent; Emporia State, 4.9 percent; Pittsburg State, 6.2 percent; and Fort Hays State, 6.3 percent.