Budget also reinstates $125 million from cuts to last fiscal year.
$10 Million Targeted for Online Learning Initiatives to
Address "Bottleneck" Courses
Governor Jerry Brown today released his 2013-2014 state budget proposal that signals a renewed investment in higher education with the addition of $125.1 million in state funding for the California State University.
The Governor's budget also reinstates $125 million that was cut from last year's budget and was due to be reimbursed in this year's budget following the successful passage of Proposition 30.
Sonoma State Political Science Professor David McCuan sad "This is budget about austerity and is very adult - something this Governor is going to push as he rides the wave of a successful November 2012 election."
"He thinks big, too, and so several sacred cows and third rails of California politics will be looked at as this Governor balances both his legacy while reading the political tea leaves into the 2013-2014 period," he said.
"We appreciate the Governor's recognition that California will benefit from the investment of state funds into higher education," said CSU Chancellor Timothy P. White. "The proposed budget heads us in the right direction," continued White.
"It will allow the CSU to address the unprecedented demand for high quality education at our institutions, as well as areas of critical need. We still face many fiscal challenges and will continue efforts to operate efficiently and effectively, and seek out additional innovative ways to control costs."
McCucan observed "While Democrats have a super-majority in the Legislature, necessary to raise more revenue for the state, this Governor has made it clear he has a priority of growing California's economy while restraining budgetary growth in several areas most notably with corrections and aid to county and city governments."
Second, this budget proposal is all about "fiscal discipline" and after the passage of Proposition 30 last November by California voters, the Governor continues his push to put California's fiscal house in order, he said.
"While K-12 and higher education receive more dollars in this proposal, these areas are still clawing back from four or five years of cuts while demands grow among the state's diverse population."
Overall, the increase in state support for the CSU brings state funding levels to $2.2 billion for the support of university programs and operations. As part of its 2013-2014 budget ask of the governor and legislature, CSU had requested a total of $371.9 million over its current baseline budget that includes state funds, tuition and systemwide fees.
As part of the additional $125.1 million in proposed state funds, $10 million has been directed in the Governor's budget for online strategies to get more students through so-called "bottleneck" courses.
These are courses across the system that cause many students to slow their time to degree until they can find a "seat" in that particular course. They are either lower-division general education requirements, pre-requisites for majors or high demand classes.
The directed funds would be used for a multi-pronged approach incorporating technology-enhanced learning, student advising and course redesign to ensure student success. Together, all of these efforts are expected to provide thousands of students more access to classes and help them progress to degree.
Over the past several years, state support of the CSU has been dramatically decreased with more than 30 percent of state funding cut for the system. The loss of state support forced the CSU Board of Trustees to approve sizable tuition fee increases.
However, increases in available revenue from tuition hikes did not keep pace with state funding cuts. Consequently, to manage the massive budget reductions, CSU instituted a number of cost saving measures including decreased enrollment, emplomillion from cuts to last fiscal year
Claudia Keith or