Austin Community College District (ACC) students, faculty, and staff joined hundreds of their peers at the State Capitol to push for increased investment in community colleges during the 88th Texas legislative session.
About a dozen ACC students met with members of the Central Texas legislative delegation and, in addition to advocating for increased funding, asked legislators to pass the recommendations of the Texas Commission on Community College Finance.
“Students were able to tell their stories to legislators and put a human face on the struggles of community college students who often must balance school, work, family, and trying to make ends meet,” says Dr. Chris Cervini, ACC Community and Public Affairs vice chancellor.
The ACC Board of Trustees approved 2023 state legislative priorities at its regular meeting in January 2023. Aligned with the priorities of the Texas Association of Community Colleges and Community College Association of Texas Trustees, priorities include:
- Community College Finance Reform – Support legislation developed from the Final Recommendations of the Texas Commission on Community College Finance.
- Texas Educational Opportunity Grant (TEOG) – Support flexibility for the required matching funds community colleges must meet to access Texas Education Opportunity Grants, with an eye toward equal requirements with TEXAS Grants.
- Cybersecurity and IT Modernization – To the extent available, utilize one-time funding opportunities for critical IT infrastructure modernization at community colleges. Avoid unfunded mandates for community colleges to meet state cybersecurity requirements with the Department of Information Resources.
- Clinical Nursing Sites – Address the shortage of clinical sites and hours for community college nursing students statewide.
- Texas Transfer Framework – Seek statutory authority for the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board to improve implementation and accountability of the new Texas Transfer Field of Studies initiative, specifically with acceptance and applicability of credit hours upon transfer.
The 88th Legislature runs through May 29. Click here for legislative information.