Higher Education

R.G.’s Take: Perry Gets His Way Again

May 26, 2011 By R.G. Ratcliffe

Oh, ye liberals, Democrats and college professors, weep. There is no doubt now that the man you love to hate – Governor Rick Perry – will be the biggest winner of the 82nd Legislature. Perry has gotten his way on almost every item on is legislative agenda and squeezed the state budget turnip until it bled. Perry is the flavor of the week nationally for the politicos and pundits looking for a candidate of principled policy and pizzazz to join the Republican presidential contest. And Perry’s biggest public relations flop of the session – meddling with higher education – hasn’t fazed him in the least. If you believe the higher education community and alumni and newspaper backlash to Perry’s support of Jeff Sandefer and his proposed “Seven Breakthrough Solutions” for university reform have prompted Perry to back off, think again. Sources close to the governor tell me that in either late June or July, Perry will unveil his own proposal for higher education reform. While the details are still being worked out, it is sure to contain his call for $10,000 undergraduate degrees, greater efficiencies in the teaching of undergraduates, teacher accountability and a potential rebalancing of instructional and research budgets with a goal of lowering the cost of a bachelor’s degree. Perry, in his Austin American-Statesman op-ed, said academia wants him to “butt out.” He’s not going to: “Our knowledge-dependent economy and you — the taxpayer footing the bills — deserve better.”

Tuition de-reg: Will it be an issue in the speaker’s race?

Nov 23, 2008 By Paul Burka

Here’s the problem for Tom Craddick. The House passed tuition deregulation in 2003 for one reason and one reason only: The speaker twisted Republicans’ arms to get the votes. Almost six years later, tuition and fees at Texas’s public university have risen by an average of 50%, according to Robert…