January 21st, 2011 |
This post has been updated with information regarding SB1.
President’s Office, Spring 2011
Impact on Austin Community College District (ACC)
HB1 and SB1 would both deal a serious blow to Texas community colleges and, more importantly, to economic recovery in Texas. It is counter-productive to the state’s goals of closing the education gaps, producing a skilled workforce, and competing in the global marketplace. Less funding for community colleges will shut the door to higher education and opportunity for thousands of Texas families, while putting more funding responsibility on students and local taxpayers. Shortchanging community colleges is not good public policy.
Community colleges close education gaps and drive economic recovery.
- Enroll the majority of Texas higher education students, serve 75% of all minority freshmen and sophomores, and offer the fastest-growing workplace credential – the associate degree.
- Statewide enrollments are up 34% in the past five years. (ACC enrollments increased by 11,000 students in five years – 8,000 in the last two years.)
- Lowest-cost provider of higher education to students and to the state.
- Offer programs that make students college-ready, and educate and train the workforce.
- 49% increase in degrees and certificates awarded since 2000.
- Transfer students perform as well as or better than native four-year university students. ACC transfer students entering UT-Austin in fall 2009 earned an average 3.1 GPA after one year, compared with 3.02 for UT freshmen.
- Produce 62% of all registered nurses and 84% of first responders.
- Best way to produce an educated society, build a larger middle class, and reduce social services costs.
HB1 and SB1 would have a significant financial impact on ACC.
- State funding to ACC has decreased from 41.6% in FY 2000 to 20.6% in FY2011.
- Bill impacts include:
ACC has planned and budgeted effectively.
- ACC has a long-term Master Plan. The budget is tied to its four primary goals – meet enrollment targets, expand instructional capacity, enhance student success, and increase fiscal capacity.
- ACC remains focused on student success and providing critical programs needed to support economic growth in Central Texas.
- ACC is committed to avoiding reductions or lay-offs of faculty/staff positions because it must respond to growth demands in the eight-county service area.
- ACC will honor commitments related to the new ACC Elgin Campus and the new ACC Hays Campus. Revenue from the recent HCISD and EISD annexations is dedicated to the new campuses in those communities.
- While a tuition increase will be necessary, the college is dedicated to maintaining the lowest in-district tuition of all higher education institutions in our service area.
- ACC is also exploring other options.
- Implementing a personnel freeze
- Increasing tuition and consideration of differential tuition for certain high-cost programs
- Reviewing course limits
- Reducing or eliminating courses with low enrollment and reviewing enrollment management to ensure efficiency
- Course redesign
- Reviewing elective waivers of tuition/fees
- Reviewing technology, capital outlay, and deferred maintenance base funding
- Launching ACC Innovations program in which faculty, staff, and students may recommend cost-cutting measures for continuous quality improvement
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