The Council on Postsecondary Education approved a 3 percent ceiling for tuition increases for the coming academic year for in-state undergraduate students at Kentucky’s public colleges and universities. This represents the smallest average tuition increase for Kentucky public institutions in 15 years.

Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear said, “Students and families across the state are struggling to keep up with ever-increasing tuition and fee payments for college, and today’s vote shows the Council recognizes the challenge of paying for education. I congratulate the Council on today’s vote, which will help to keep college education within reach for more Kentucky families.”

“Given the challenging economic environment that our students face, the Council felt it was appropriate that tuition increases be as minimal as possible next year, while still allowing institutions some revenue to meet growing fixed costs,” explained Council President Bob King.

King said the additional tuition and fee revenue of $31.5 million will address only about half (51.3 percent) of the estimated $61.4 million increase in fixed costs next year, resulting in an estimated budget shortfall of $29.9 million.

“Our campuses are doing their part to constrain costs without sacrificing academic quality,” he said. “It is clear that if Kentucky wants a healthy and vibrant economy, it can only do so with a well-educated workforce. We are hopeful our elected officials will find a way to reinvest in higher education.”

In other tuition action, the Council maintained the current floor for nonresident, undergraduate tuition and mandatory fees at two times the resident, undergraduate rate. For graduate and online tuition and fees, the Council allowed the public universities to submit market competitive resident and nonresident rates.

The Council will vote on complete campus tuition proposals at its June 20 meeting.

The Council took other action at its meeting earlier today at Lindsey Wilson College:

  • Approved a four-year Kentucky/Indiana tuition reciprocity agreement to provide broader access and opportunity for students at reduced tuition charges.
  • Approved University of Louisville’s request to replace the Papa John Cardinal Stadium sound system with $3 million of private and athletic association funds. Total project scope is $3 million.
  • Approved the University of Kentucky’s request to upgrade/relocate the Pediatric Critical Care (UK HealthCare) with $6 million of private funds. Total project scope is $6 million.
  • Approved three new academic programs, including a B.A. in environmental and sustainability studies at UK, the M.A. in arts administration at UK, and the B.A. in Asian studies at UofL.
  • Funded three clinical preparation sites for teacher preparation model programs: Eastern Kentucky University (in partnership with Corbin Independent Schools); UofL (in partnership with Jefferson County Public Schools); and Western Kentucky University (in partnership with Bowling Green Independent Schools and Simpson County Public Schools). These programs will each receive $500,000 from the Council’s Senate Bill 1 (2009) 2013-14 appropriation for a total investment of $1.5 million.
  • Presented resolutions honoring former Council members Lisa F. Osborne, whose term expired, a posthumous resolution to Thomas Kennedy Helm III, and a resolution for Council employee Angel Johnson who will retire this month.

The Council also heard the following reports: performance presentations from Western Kentucky University and the Association of Independent Kentucky Colleges and Universities; update on college readiness objectives and strategies; CPE President and Commissioner of Education; 2013 legislative session; and Committee on Equal Opportunities (CEO).

Before adjourning, Chair Pam Miller appointed CPE member Dennis Jackson as chair of the CEO, and appointed CPE member Arnold Taylor to serve on the CEO.

The next meeting of the Council is set June 19-20 at Kentucky State University, Frankfort.

Meeting materials are available on the Council’s website at http://www.cpe.ky.gov/about/cpe/meetings/2013/April+18+Meeting.htm.


We believe in the transformative power of postsecondary education. Stronger by Degrees, the new strategic agenda for Kentucky’s colleges and universities and adult basic education, is powering a stronger Kentucky economy and improving the lives of Kentuckians. To learn more about Stronger by Degrees, visit http://cpe.ky.gov/strongerbydegrees.
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