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December 16, 2009 2:04 PM How Louisiana Pays for College

By Daniel Luzer

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Louisiana is the only state in the U.S. that needs two-thirds of its legislature to approve tuition increases. Perhaps because of this, in the state the relationship between college cost and college effectiveness is, if not transparent, at least something people openly discuss. From an article in The Advocate comes news that:

The Legislature should give up tuition control and colleges should be allowed to increase their costs to the regional Southern medians, a state higher education review panel recommended Tuesday.
The Louisiana Postsecondary Education Review Commission also approved recommendations to more strongly tie state college funding to performance measures, such as increases in the number of annual graduates.

While in the short term this just boils down to a great big tuition hike, allowing state universities to set their own tuition rates is normal. But connecting state funding for education to performance measures seems like a very interesting plan for many state universities. That would make state support transparent and formulaic and would also push schools to turn out what their state needs.

The Louisiana Postsecondary Education Review Commission’s recommendations came about because Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal is looking for a way to slash $146 million from the state’s higher education budgets.

Daniel Luzer is the news editor at Governing Magazine and former web editor of the Washington Monthly. Find him on Twitter: @Daniel_Luzer