HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
NOTICE OF FORMAL REQUEST FOR INFORMATION
COMMITTEE: Higher Education
Request for Information, Interim Charge One
Due to the ongoing pandemic and the uncertainty as to scheduling interim hearings, the Committee is conducting necessary oversight functions through an information-gathering process under Section 301.014, Government Code.
For this charge, the Committee requests written submissions from public university systems, public universities, public community, technical and state colleges and the Higher Education Coordinating Board. Relevant higher education associations are also welcome to provide feedback in regards to the assigned Interim Charge and additional questions as outlined below. All submissions are due on September 1, 2020, by 5 pm (CST).
Submissions should be delivered via email to the committee clerk, Julie Young, at Julie.Young_hc@house.texas.gov and shall be in word format. Submissions should be no longer than five (5) pages in length. The page limit is not inclusive of any photos, graphs, spreadsheets, charts, etc. the submitter chooses to include. Submissions shall include the submitter name, organization or entity (if applicable and an authorized representative), mailing address, email, and telephone number.
All submissions will be circulated to each Member of the Committee after the September 1, 2020 deadline. A copy of all received comments will be made available to the public by the Committee and the public will have the opportunity to submit comments to the Committee in response to information received from designated parties.
Interim Charge 1:
Monitor the agencies and programs under the Committee's jurisdiction and oversee the implementation of relevant legislation passed by the 86th Legislature. Conduct active oversight of all associated rulemaking and other governmental actions taken to ensure intended legislative outcome of all legislation, including the following:
· HB 1638 (85R), which relates to statewide goals for dual credit programs. Review best practices for providing opportunities to high school students to earn college credit while ensuring that courses taken reflect authentic, college-level rigor.
1. What challenges have institutions faced with dual credit prior to and as a result of the pandemic?
2. How have institutions addressed these challenges?
3. What changes, if any, are needed to ensure that students have opportunities to earn college credit which fulfills the criteria outlined above?
· SB 18, which relates to the protection of expressive activities at public institutions of higher education. Monitor the process by which institutions of higher education implement policies to protect the expressive rights of persons guaranteed by the constitutions of the United States and of this state.
1. What have institutions done to protect the expressive rights of persons while also maintaining an orderly and safe learning environment?
· SB 25, which relates to measures to facilitate the transfer, academic progress, and timely graduation of students in public higher education. Monitor the process by which the Higher Education Coordinating Board adopts rules via negotiated rulemaking. Monitor the progress of institutions developing recommended course sequences and the progress of the feasibility study to implement statewide meta majors.
1. In what ways can data collection and sharing between THECB and TEA improve and assist institutions with college credit transferability?
2. What role can school counselors and advisors play in the success of transferable credits? Are there ways in which the state can utilize their expertise and student relationships more effectively?