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“NP” as New “F”

With Competency-Based Education (it goes by other titles, too) students must show they’ve mastered “competencies” — specific skills or knowledge — before they move on to the next level, and eventually receive a diploma. Most such programs are in K-12, but the University of Maine at Presque Isle (or UMPI) is one of the first […]

Workforce Training and Cost

As we start a new semester, if your classes are full, generally speaking it’s a good thing, regarding state revenue for your school. As we all know, enrollments are the most important factor in the legislative funding formula, along with approximately ten percent awarded for improvement in student success. But the complex formula also takes […]

2018 ERS Health Plan Checklist

As of Jan. 1, the Employees Retirement System, which administers health coverage for Texas community and technical college educators, has initiated some changes that may apply to you, depending upon which plan you have chosen. You should have already been notified of these changes, but below is an assembled list for your convenience. Changes as […]

Commissioner Reiterates Concerns about Dual Credit

Texas Commissioner of Higher Education Raymund Paredes has again raised serious concerns about dual credit programs in our state. Of prime importance is the robust expansion of such programs in recent years, due to a statute removing restrictions on colleges and school districts. Dual credit now includes many students who are not college-ready, according to […]

The Dilemmas of Worker Retraining

The basic idea is simple: A big manufacturing company decides to move out of town, or out of the country, resulting in massive layoffs, so the local community college steps in to retrain former employees to help them get a good job in another field. But this important task is hard to pull off, for […]

Texas, DACA, Dreamers, and the Wall

For obvious reasons, Texas is home to many so-called Dreamers, who came to the U.S. illegally as children—a lot of whom are college graduates now, including public school teachers, as well as current students at our higher education institutions. President Trump has officially ended the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA, program instituted by the […]

The Future of Work

Returning to work after a holiday period allows us to focus on the future, if we can carve out some time for reflection. Much of our personal identity in modern society has been traditionally linked with our jobs. “What do you do?” is a common question one asks a new acquaintance in making conversation, and […]

“Risk-Sharing” Plan Draws Concern

Community college officials may wish to pay attention to a proposal in a U.S. House bill to reauthorize the Higher Education Act (H.R. 4508, the “PROSPER” Act), which would require colleges to return substantial portions of federal financial aid received by students who do not complete a term or other academic period, as reported by David Baime in Community […]

Join Us in Frisco!

If you have not already done so, please make plans to attend the TCCTA annual convention in Frisco, March 1-3, 2018. Overflow housing convenient to the headquarters Embassy Suites is still available This link provides all the information you need. Please check the site for updates and changes. On Thursday, March 1, at the general […]

“Tennessee Promise” Falls Short on Student Success

Even as Tennessee is being praised for opening college doors through Tennessee Promise and other programs, there are signs that some of higher education’s biggest and most persistent hurdles still keep many students from succeeding, according to Jason Gonzales, in USA Today, as published in The Tennessean. Enrollment and retention have ticked up at the state’s […]