Higher Education Bills Introduced in New Jersey in 2014

Twenty bills have been posted dealing with higher education in New Jersey; the bills range from doing away with the obligatory meal plans to freezing tuition. For those interested, the bills’ numbers are: A676 – establishing performance-based funding plans; A2800 – assessment for college readiness; A2801 – requiring only 120 credits for a bachelor’s degree and no more than 60 for an associate’s degree; A2802 – establishing an incentive plan to re-enroll in college; A2803 – to provide better transparency by requiring colleges to post on their websites information on graduation rates, faculty, attendance, how many students need remedial education and the graduation rates of said students; A2804 – requiring community colleges to establish a three-year graduation rate of 33% for their students by 2019/20 year; A2805 – requiring common core course numbering system in public institutions; A2806 – creating the New Jersey School Counts County College Scholarship program; A2807 – freezes tuition for nine consecutive semesters upon a student’s initial enrollment at public and private institutions; A2808 – investigate quality, cost, and prevalence of online courses; A2809 –  requires institutions to develop open-access textbooks and requires a buyback of textbooks at 50% of cover price; A2810 – allows tax deductions for certain student loans; A2811 – does away with required meal plans; A2812 – establishment of a data system that will track an individual from preschool until workplace entry; A2813 – mandates closure of public institutions that fail to achieve a six-year graduation rate of at least 50%; A2814 – allows the revocation of a for-profit school’s license if it fails to achieve a minimum graduation rate; A2815 – requires an annual report on public institutional debt  by NJ Educational Facilities Authority; A2816 – directs state auditor to investigate fees at public institutions; A2817 – requires school districts and public institutions to provide dual-enrollment programs for college credit at reduced rates; and A2818 – development by public institutions of pathway programs to graduation.

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