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Archive for Thursday, November 21, 2013

Regents may seek support of Brownback, Legislature in its long-term goals

November 21, 2013

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What is Foresight 2020?

Foresight 2020 calls for increasing from 50 percent to 60 percent the number of Kansas adults who have a post-secondary certificate or credential or an associate's or bachelor's degree by 2020.

— Higher education officials today said they may ask the Legislature and Gov. Sam Brownback to endorse their long-range strategic plan.

"We're talking about the possibility of doing that this session," said Kansas Board of Regents Chairman Fred Logan of Leawood.

In 2010, the regents approved a 10-year plan called Foresight 2020 and updated it last year.

Foresight 2020 calls for increasing from 50 percent to 60 percent the number of Kansas adults who have a post-secondary certificate or credential or an associate's or bachelor's degree by 2020.

The plan also seeks to achieve a 10 percentage point increase in retention and graduation rates.

In many of their discussions, board members refer to Foresight 2020, but Regent Ed McKechnie, of Arcadia, wondered if the Legislature had any "buy-in" to the plan.

"What if our funders say we don't want to do that?" McKechnie asked.

Logan said there has been discussion about asking the Legislature and Brownback to approve a resolution supporting Foresight 2020.

Consideration of seeking an endorsement of Foresight 2020 comes as higher education officials and conservative Republicans in charge of the House and Senate have battled over funding cuts in recent months.

Republicans approved $34.3 million in cuts to public universities and Brownback signed those reductions into law. Brownback has since said he would like those cuts restored.

Last month, the House and Senate budget committees toured university campuses in preparation for budget discussions in the 2014 legislative session, which starts in January.

Legislative leaders say it's too early to say what the legislative position should be on higher education funding.

But regents members said they believed the campus visits went well.

Brownback said he thought it was a good experience, too, especially for newer legislators. "For a long time, you had, basically here's a block grant that goes to regents. This group was saying, 'Wait a minute, where is all the money going to? What are we getting out of this?' I think there is the start of a good dialogue," he said.

Comments

Dave Trabert 9 months, 1 week ago

The Regents continue to push the false notion that more taxpayer money is required to raise education attainment. As usual, it's all about the money with institutions.

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Amy Varoli Elliott 9 months, 1 week ago

And the state keeps crying that the price is too high as they continue to slash their funding, you can't have it both ways. Maybe if the people in the legislation were actually educated things wouldn't be going down the gutter so fast in this state.

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