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Higher Ed Commission Recommends Less Than 2 Percent Tuition Hike

Higher Ed Commissioner Teresa Lubbers speaks at a Commission meeting Monday, May 6 2019.

Indiana Commissioner for Higher Education Teresa Lubbers speaks at a meeting of the Commission Monday, May 6, 2019. (Steve Burns, WTIU/WFIU News)

The Indiana Commission for Higher Education is recommending raising public college tuition and fees by no more than 1.65 percent each year until 2021.

The commission met earlier this week to set new targets for the increases.

Commission member John Popp suggested adding a performance funding incentive for schools that don’t raise their tuition and fees. Performance funding is a formula the state uses to measure degree completion and progress statistics to determine how much state funding schools receive.

"The more affordable our colleges are, the more chance we have of getting students, and that’s our goal," Popp says.

Secretary Allan Hubbard echoed the suggestion. He asked Commissioner for Higher Education Teresa Lubbers to look into it, adding that he wondered if universities would be more receptive to a monetary incentive than just a commission recommendation.

"I think we oughta ask you and your staff to look at whether we could put some sort of financial incentive in to encourage universities to pay more attention to their increases," he says.

In-state tuition and fees at public, four-year colleges and universities in Indiana have increased by only 1.4 percent since 2009, compared to a national rate of 3.1 percent.

Schools are not required to follow the Commission’s recommendations. They have until June 28 to set their tuition and fees for the next biennium.

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