Governor sets higher education goals, including funding change | Arkansas Blog

Governor sets higher education goals, including funding change


Gov. Asa Hutchinson spoke at a Department of Higher Education session today and I was tuning in and out on his office's live Meerkat feed, but calls took me away.

He wants to increase the completion rate for post-high-school schooling by 10 percent and to also improve results by minority students and older, non-traditional students. He talked, too, about a change in higher education funding with more emphasis on achievement in determining how much money colleges receive.

If I can find a place where these remarks are archived, I'll add a link.

UPDATE: The governor and Higher Ed Director Brett Powell issued a brief statement later:

Governor Asa Hutchinson joined Dr. Brett Powell, Director of the Arkansas Department of Higher Education (ADHE), today to announce the “Closing the Gap 2020: A Master Plan for Arkansas Higher Education.” This draft plan focuses on six key points, including: (1) Closing the educational attainment gap; (2) Improving college readiness of students; (3) Reducing remedial education enrollments; (4) Concentrating efforts on adults and underserved populations; (5) Improving college affordability through reduced time to degree and institutional efficiencies; and (6) Directing state resources toward achievement of these goals.

This objective and draft of proposed goals, which can be found HERE, provides a starting point to determine and address challenging yet achievable goals for improving Arkansas’s higher education. A final master plan will be released at the end of October.

Governor Hutchinson issued the following statement:

“If you look at the data, adults in Arkansas who don’t get any education beyond high school don’t get ahead. If we hope to grow our economy, attract jobs and businesses and improve the quality of life in our state, we have to address this. I’m pleased that Dr. Powell has set some ambitious goals to bridge the educational attainment gap in Arkansas, and I know he’ll work together with our higher education institutions to determine the best way to meet those goals.”
Dr. Powell issued the following statement:

“Our long-term objective is to achieve a significantly higher post-secondary attainment rate in Arkansas by 2025. To do that, we must improve college graduation rates, increase the enrollment of adult students dramatically, reach the underserved students and improve college affordability. It’s a tall order, but it’s essential to move Arkansas forward.”​

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