Bill Text: TX SB644 | 2017-2018 | 85th Legislature | Introduced


Bill Title: Relating to authorization by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board for certain public junior colleges to offer baccalaureate degree programs.

Spectrum: Partisan Bill (Democrat 1-0)

Status: (Introduced) 2017-02-13 - Referred to Higher Education [SB644 Detail]

Download: Texas-2017-SB644-Introduced.html
  85R3548 JRJ-F
 
  By: Watson S.B. No. 644
 
 
 
A BILL TO BE ENTITLED
 
AN ACT
  relating to authorization by the Texas Higher Education
  Coordinating Board for certain public junior colleges to offer
  baccalaureate degree programs.
         BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF TEXAS:
         SECTION 1.  Section 130.0012, Education Code, is amended by
  amending Subsections (a), (b), (e), (g), and (h) and adding
  Subsection (g-1) to read as follows:
         (a)  The Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board may
  [shall] authorize public junior colleges to offer baccalaureate
  degree programs in the fields of applied science, [and] applied
  technology, early childhood education, and nursing under this
  section. Offering a baccalaureate degree program under this
  section does not otherwise alter the role and mission of a public
  junior college.
         (b)  The coordinating board:
               (1)  shall authorize baccalaureate degree programs in
  the fields of applied science and applied technology at each public
  junior college that previously participated in a pilot project to
  offer baccalaureate degree programs; and
               (2)  may authorize baccalaureate degree programs at one
  or more public junior colleges that offer a degree program in the
  fields of applied science, applied technology, early childhood
  education, or nursing and have demonstrated a workforce need.
         (e)  In determining what baccalaureate degree programs are
  to be offered, the coordinating board shall:
               (1)  apply the same criteria and standards the
  coordinating board uses to approve baccalaureate degree programs at
  general academic teaching institutions; and
               (2)  consider the following factors:
                     (A) [(1)]  the workforce need for the degree
  programs in the region served by the junior college;
                     (B) [(2)]  how those degree programs would
  complement the other programs and course offerings of the junior
  college and whether the associate degree program offered by the
  junior college in the same field has been successful;
                     (C) [(3)]  whether those degree programs would
  unnecessarily duplicate the degree programs offered by other
  institutions of higher education; [and]
                     (D) [(4)]  the ability of the junior college to
  support the program with student enrollment and the adequacy of the
  junior college's facilities, faculty, administration, libraries,
  and other resources; and
                     (E)  whether the junior college meets the taxable
  property valuation amount established in Section 130.032.
         (g)  Except as provided by Subsection (g-1), a degree program
  created under this section may be funded solely by a public junior
  college's proportionate share of state appropriations under
  Section 130.003, local funds, and private sources. This subsection
  does not require the legislature to appropriate state funds to
  support a degree program created under this section.
         (g-1)  Notwithstanding Subsection (g), in [In] its
  recommendations to the legislature relating to state funding for
  public junior colleges, the coordinating board shall recommend that
  a public junior college that previously participated in a pilot
  project to offer baccalaureate degree programs receive
  substantially the same state support for junior-level and
  senior-level courses in the fields of applied science and applied
  technology offered under this section as that provided to a general
  academic teaching institution for substantially similar courses.
  For purposes of this subsection, in [In] determining the contact
  hours attributable to students enrolled in a junior-level or
  senior-level course in the field of applied science or applied
  technology offered under this section used to determine a public
  junior college's proportionate share of state appropriations under
  Section 130.003, the coordinating board shall weigh those contact
  hours as necessary to provide the junior college the appropriate
  level of state support to the extent state funds for those courses
  are included in the appropriations. This subsection does not
  prohibit the legislature from directly appropriating state funds to
  support junior-level and senior-level courses to which this
  subsection applies [offered under this section].
         (h)  Each biennium, each [Each] public junior college
  offering a baccalaureate degree program under this section shall
  conduct a review of each baccalaureate degree program offered and
  prepare a [biennial] report on the operation, quality, and
  effectiveness of those [the junior college's baccalaureate] degree
  programs. A [and shall deliver a] copy of the report shall be
  delivered to the coordinating board in the form and at the time
  determined by the coordinating board.
         SECTION 2.  This Act takes effect immediately if it receives
  a vote of two-thirds of all the members elected to each house, as
  provided by Section 39, Article III, Texas Constitution.  If this
  Act does not receive the vote necessary for immediate effect, this
  Act takes effect September 1, 2017.
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