The Legislature’s Joint Committee on Education held its final public hearing on establishing a funding formula for higher education throughout Missouri.
The Joint Committee on Education traveled to several universities and community colleges across the state to get perspectives from different schools about how they should go about creating a funding formula for higher education.
State Senator David Pearce says representatives from colleges across the state participated in the hearing to testify on their views about coming up with a formula. He says the committee is looking into what is important to implement in the formula and what not to include, as well as performance.
“What are some things when it comes to performance standards and what are some things that we should look at as far as higher education funding?” he says. “For example, how well do universities do when it comes to keeping students in? How many students do they retrain and how many students drop out?” Pearce says.
Pearce says right now it’s too premature for the committee to have a recommendation about funding. “From here, we will probably have a meeting with the joint committee on education, I would assume in mid-December to come up with results of what we’ve seen,” he says. “And then also start getting recommendations from the committee.”
Pearce says the biggest question the committee needs to ask themselves and come up with a solution is, when you’re coming up with a new formula, is it just for new money that comes in to higher education or do you take a look at the money you already have?
He says that could mean that some universities would receive less funding than what they are currently receiving and that would be one of the committee’s biggest decisions that they would need to take into consideration.
“The task of this committee is not to increase funding, nor to focus on the dollar amount to higher education. That will come later through the appropriations process through general revenue,” he says. “What our task is, is to look at once that money has been determined that’s coming to higher education, how do you distribute it? How do you distribute it to give an incentive to those universities that are doing a good job?” Pearce says.
AUDIO: Mary Farucci reports. (1:03)