More Collaboration Needed To Fix Higher Education
Career College Central summary:
California is falling short in preparing and graduating college students and must do more to coordinate higher education policy, according to two new reports released Thursday that call for more collaboration between the governor, Legislature and education leaders. The reports come in the wake of a pledge to do just that by leaders of the state’s three higher education segments in a rare joint appearance Wednesday before the UC regents.
UC President Janet Napolitano, Cal State Chancellor Timothy White and community colleges Chancellor Brice W. Harris agreed on the need to reform and strengthen the state’s 1960 Master Plan for Higher Education, which set differing missions for each system. The master plan was seen as a model, efficiently churning out millions of college graduates and bolstering California’s standing as a world economic and education leader. But the higher education system has fallen into mediocrity, according to a report prepared by the Institute for Higher Education Leadership & Policy at Cal State Sacramento.
California’s high school graduation rate is 68%, ranking 37th among the states, and more than 60% of high school graduates fail to complete courses required to enroll in the state’s four-year public universities, according to researchers. Tuition and fees, meanwhile, have increased substantially over the last decade — at a rate of 139% at UC and 157% at Cal State, compared to a national rate of 91%.
The state ranks first in the number of freshmen who return as sophomores and has a higher than average graduation rate for full-time first–time students, but it ranks among the lowest of states in the number of credentials and degrees produced per 100 undergraduates at public two-year schools.
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THE LOS ANGELES TIMES