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4 Document(s) [ Subject: ]

Committee: Senate Higher Education
Title: Interim Report
Subjects: Dual credit high school programs | Early college high schools | Federal mandates | Higher education | Nontraditional students | State mandates | University finance | University student transfers |
Library Call Number: L1836.85 Ed86h
Session: 85th R.S. (2017)
Online version: View report [95 pages]
Charges: This report should address the charges below.
1. Improving Transferability: Examine and make recommendations regarding policies that will help students make informed decisions regarding transferring credits among institutions and promote efficient completion of degrees and credentials. Study the adequacy of advising for transfer students in secondary and post-secondary settings. Focus on statewide solutions that will address transfer for all Texas students, including Fields of Study curricula, the role of the Core Curriculum and additional tools that will help students transfer credits efficiently toward a degree.
2. System/Campus Expansion: Consider what role the state should have in overseeing the approval and development of new higher education locations into geographical areas already served by existing institutions. Develop a long-term statewide strategy for authorizing new locations and programs which includes a plan to ensure adequate support for expansion. Explore where there are underserved areas of the state and what type of programs would best serve the population to fill regional workforce needs.
3. 60x30 TX Statewide Plan Review: Examine progress in achieving goals within the 60x30TX plan, and review efforts of higher education institutions to implement innovative and non-traditional models of education delivery to meet the needs of an increasingly diverse student body. Consider whether current state policies and regulations may support or hinder institutions' ability to innovate in educational delivery and access. Make recommendations to accelerate innovation in higher education, to better serve students through expanded access to high quality educational opportunities, improve quality in educational delivery, and achieve goals outlined in the 6ox30TX higher education strategic plan.
4. Funding Models: Examine different models of student-focused funding for general academic institutions, including competency-based and performance funding models, and make recommendations on whether a new funding model would produce greater efficiencies and student performance.
5. Mandate Reduction: Examine all current state and federal regulations on public higher education institutions and consider whether reductions of regulations could reduce fees, produce efficiencies and greater student academic performance. Make recommendations to reduce certain regulations for increased flexibility to provide better student outcomes.
6. Dual Credit: Review dual credit opportunities throughout the state, examining the impact of HB 505 (84th Legislature) on students in particular. Look at the outcomes of statewide studies completed in Texas regarding dual credit, and examine the current rigor of dual credit courses, as well as how to improve advising for students in dual credit. (JOINT CHARGE with EDUCATION)
7. Monitoring: Monitor the implementation of legislation addressed by the Senate Higher Education Committee and make recommendations for any legislation needed to improve, enhance and/ or complete implementation. Specifically, receive updates on construction of facilities as a result of tuition revenue bonds authorized during the 84th Legislative Session, as well as the development and implementation of the Texas OnCourse program, authorized during the 84th Legislative Session and monitor the following: • SB 2118 (85th) relating to authorization by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board for certain public junior colleges to offer baccalaureate degree programs. • HB 2205 (84th) relating to the State Board for Educator Certification, educator preparation programs, educator certification, issuance of certain teaching permits, and certain procedures for investigating educator misconduct. • SB 887 (85th) relating to a requirement that certain participating institutions under the student loan program administered by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board provide loan debt information to certain students. • SB 802 (85th) relating to a study and report regarding best practices in the transfer of course credit between public institutions of higher education. • SB 810 (85th) relating to open educational resources. • HB 2223 (85th) relating to developmental coursework offered by public institutions of higher education under the Texas Success Initiative.
Committee: House Higher Education
Title: Interim Report
Subjects: Dual credit high school programs | Higher education | Higher education affordability | Hurricane Harvey | Nontraditional students | Sex crimes | Sexual harassment | Teacher training |
Library Call Number: L1836.85 Ed84hh
Session: 85th R.S. (2017)
Online version: View report [23 pages]
Charges: This report should address the charges below.
1. Determine, to the extent possible, the scope of financial losses to 2- and 4-year institutions, including facilities, that resulted from Hurricane Harvey. Recommend possible state actions to mitigate any negative impact on institutions and ensure governance structures and parameters allow for effective responses. Review the educational opportunities offered to students displaced by Harvey throughout the state. Recommend any changes that could improve the process and what additional services might be needed for these displaced students.
2. Determine the impact of any federal action pertaining to Title IX and the potential effects on current state laws and rules pertaining to sexual misconduct policies at institutions of higher education.
3. Examine the rapid growth of dual credit course offerings across the state, and evaluate whether dual credit is effectively reducing time-to-degree and improving affordability for students and the state. Evaluate institutions’ policies and processes for ensuring rigor and quality, and the adequacy of student advising regarding the potential applicability of dual credit courses to future academic program requirements. Review the current state funding methodology and costs of, and the share of state funding attributable to, dual credit programs.
4. Examine efforts of 2- and 4-year institutions to implement innovative and non-traditional models of education delivery to meet the needs of an increasingly diverse student body and the demands of a rapidly changing workforce. Identify any obstacles to institutional innovation. Make recommendations to scale innovative educational models to better serve students and employers.
5. Review current data available to the public about Educator Preparation Programs (EPPs) and make recommendations to ensure the data is transparent, user-friendly, and actionable. Review the current EPP accountability system and recommend any new indicators or changes, including evaluating the ability of programs to meet the workforce needs of school districts by preparing teachers for high-needs areas. Determine ways to measure the effectiveness of teachers prepared by individual programs. For traditional EPP programs, make recommendations on how to more fully involve boards of regents in an effort to elevate the importance of teacher preparation within our state institutions. Examine current joint partnerships between EPPs and public schools to meet regional workforce needs, and make recommendations on how to scale these partnerships. (Joint charge with the House Committee on Public Education S/C on Teacher Quality)
6. Monitor the agencies and programs under the Committee’s jurisdiction and oversee the implementation of relevant legislation passed by the 85th Legislature. In conducting this oversight, the Committee will also specifically include: S.B. 2118 (85R) and 60x30TX, the higher education strategic plan.
Committee: House Higher Education
Title: Interim Report
Subjects: Community college finance | Community college students | Community colleges | Hazlewood Act | Higher education | Higher education affordability | Nontraditional students | Sex crimes | Student aid | Tuition | Veterans |
Library Call Number: L1836.84 Ed84hh
Session: 84th R.S. (2015)
Online version: View report [100 pages]
Charges: This report should address the charges below.
1. Conduct a review of current funding formulas for community colleges. Specifically, focus on the elements of the instructional funding structure created by the 83rd Legislature: core operations, student success points, and contact hour funding and also the adequacy of state funding to sustain community colleges in light of the variance in resources available to individual colleges. Make recommendations for possible changes to the funding structure of community colleges or changes in the levels of current funding given the future workforce and higher educational needs of the state. (Joint charge with the House Committee on Appropriations)
2. Review the state's community college system, including a discussion of taxing districts, service areas and any barriers to access. Examine the governance structure to ensure that campuses in multi campus districts that are outside of a college taxing district receive fair and equitable treatment. Review the accounting and reporting requirements of community college districts to ensure open government and transparency. Study ways community colleges could offer accessible and affordable baccalaureate degree programs in areas where the state has a significant workforce shortage without compromising quality of education and training. Make recommendations to maximize efficient student pathways and to offer more affordable educational opportunities such as through dual credit and early college start programs.
3. Study the affordability and accessibility of undergraduate college education in Texas, including a focus on middle-class students. Analyze the cost of attendance and tuition rates, comparing Texas institutions to their national peers. Review the availability and effectiveness of financial aid programs, and analyze student debt and default rates. Study and recommend ways to promote timely and cost efficient graduation.
4. Study current policies and initiatives at institutions of higher education, including community colleges, and make recommendations toward the prevention and elimination of sexual assault on college campuses. Identify, evaluate, and recommend reporting mechanisms to ensure that students have safe, appropriate, and accessible avenues for reporting sexual assault. Study the existing campus support systems in place for students who are victims of assault, and provide recommendations of best practices. Evaluate the effectiveness of current policies and make recommendations to support the prevention and elimination of sexual assault at institutions of higher education in Texas.
5. Study the long-term viability of the Hazlewood Act, in particular the legacy tuition exemption provision. Review eligibility requirements and recommend changes to ensure that the program can remain solvent. Examine the costs of the program to institutions of higher education, including foregone tuition, additional infrastructure, administrative and instructional support costs, and the financial impact on nonveteran/legacy students. Analyze and report any effect changes to this program would have for veterans and their families. Review current data systems related to this exemption and recommend improvements to ensure quality and accuracy of information. (Joint charge with the House Committee on Defense & Veterans’ Affairs)
6. Review educational opportunities for non-traditional students, including adult learners who did not complete a secondary education credential. Recommend possible funding options to promote degree, credential, and/or certification completion. Develop recommendations to promote programs that simultaneously allow adult learners to complete degrees, credentials, and/or certifications for the purpose of promoting and increasing workforce ready graduates.
7. Conduct legislative oversight and monitoring of the agencies and programs under the committee’s jurisdiction and the implementation of relevant legislation passed by the 84th Legislature, including HB 700, SB 18, HB 100, and the new higher education strategic plan for Texas as proposed by the Higher Education Coordinating Board, 60x30TX. In conducting this oversight, the committee should: a. consider any reforms to state agencies to make them more responsive to Texas taxpayers and citizens; b. identify issues regarding the agency or its governance that may be appropriate to investigate, improve, remedy, or eliminate; c. determine whether an agency is operating in a transparent and efficient manner; and d. identify opportunities to streamline programs and services while maintaining the mission of the agency and its programs.
Committee: Senate Higher Education
Title: Interim Report
Subjects: Associate's degrees | Community college students | Developmental education | Distance education | Educational technology | Graduate-on-time programs | Higher education | Higher Education Coordinating Board, Texas | Immunizations | Math education | Meningitis | Nontraditional students | P-16 councils | Persons with disabilities | Student aid | Texas B-on-Time loans | Texas State Technical College | Toward EXcellence, Access & Success Grant Program | Undocumented immigrant students | University graduation rates | University student transfers |
Library Call Number: L1836.82 Ed83h
Session: 82nd R.S. (2011)
Online version: View report [72 pages]
Charges: This report should address the charges below.
1. Study and make recommendations regarding more cost-effective funding of financial aid, including ways to restructure financial aid programs to incentivize student success, particularly among low-income students, and the efficacy of current exemptions and waivers offered to students at institutions of higher education, including in-state tuition for undocumented students. Examine student loan debt, state and federal loan forgiveness programs, and institutional default rates.
2. Study and make recommendations regarding more effective means of using technology, including the effectiveness of online learning and online coursework for underprepared students. Examine the cost and funding of online education. Examine how electronic coursework and technology impacts students with disabilities, and make recommendations to ensure all students have access to electronic materials and courses. Review and make recommendations concerning statewide or inter-system cooperation for blended and online learning.
3. Study developmental education programs in public higher education institutions. Include a demographic analysis of students who require developmental education, and identify alternative means of assessing the need for developmental education, the effectiveness of delivery of developmental education programs, and the role of P-16 councils in addressing solutions for better preparing students for higher education. Review alternative means of offering and financing developmental education courses and identify potential cost savings.
4. Examine the existing transfer systems and the potential development of a 2+2 transfer system between public junior colleges and universities. Examine the transfer of credit between degree-granting private sector colleges, public junior colleges, and public universities. Examine the impact of national, regional, and professional accrediting associations on course credit transfer.
5. Study and make recommendations regarding academic and non-academic barriers to non-traditional students, including students with disabilities. Focus on ways to restructure course and program delivery, student support services, financial barriers, and remediation and academic advising. Study and make recommendations to reduce time-to-degree, incentivize on-time graduation, and increase graduation rates to meet the goals of Closing the Gaps by 2015 and beyond.
6. Consistent with the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board's legislative directive to work with the Texas State Technical College System (TSTC) and other appropriate state agencies to develop a returned value funding model for TSTC, examine the benefits and challenges such an approach will have on technical education in Texas.
7. Monitor the implementation of legislation addressed by the Senate Committee on Higher Education, 82nd Legislature, Regular and Called Sessions, and make recommendations for any legislation needed to improve, enhance and/or complete implementation. Specifically, monitor the following:
  • SB 5, relating to the administration and business affairs of public institutions of higher education;
  • SB 28, relating to eligibility for a TEXAS grant and to administration of the TEXAS grant program;
  • HB 9, relating to student success-based funding;
  • HB 33, relating to measures to increase the affordability of textbooks used for courses at public or private institutions of higher education;
  • SB 1107, Relating to the vaccination against bacterial meningitis of entering students at public and private or independent institutions of higher education;
  • HB 1000, relating to the distribution of money appropriated from the National Research University Fund.

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