Thursday, January 15, 2015

News Links | January 15, 2015


Peninsula College now part of national rural community college pilot program
Peninsula College is one of 12 nationwide selected to receive special training and technical assistance for obtaining grants and other public and private investments. The Rural Community College Funding Development Initiative grant will provide training and assistance for the next 12 months in a pilot program.
Peninsula Daily News, Jan. 14, 2015

Study: College performance incentives aren't big success
A business-inspired approach for rewarding community colleges for student outcomes has not led many more students to stay in school and earn associates degrees in Washington state, a new study has found. The study published Wednesday in the journal Education Evaluation and Policy Analysis may disappoint more than a dozen states that reward colleges for performance and the others currently considering such a program. ... Officials at the Washington State Board for Community and Technical Colleges point out that the period studied was mostly during the recession and degree production has gone up since 2012, which was the last year of data used in the study.
KOMO News, Jan. 13, 2015

WSU, Bellevue College exploring partnership
The Eastside could see a lot more cougars in its future as Bellevue College and Washington State University officials are exploring the possibility of a partnership between the two schools. In an effort to meet the increasing financial needs of the college's rapidly growing enrollment, Bellevue College's Board of Trustees unanimously voted to authorize the school's president, David L. Rule, to explore potential financial partnerships, including Washington State University.
Bellevue Reporter, Jan. 13, 2015

Testifying to lawmakers in Olympia may get easier with remote testimonies
It might get easier for Southeastern Washingtonians to testify to lawmakers in Olympia because a video remote testimony system could be coming to Columbia Basin College. Olympia is a little over four hours away from the Tri-Cities, and that distance might make some less likely to travel up there to voice their opinions at legislative hearings.  Some hope that will change because of remote testimony. Columbia Basin College offered to help with the remote testimony, but they have to wait for final approval.
KULR, Jan. 13, 2015

Centralia College president interested in Obama’s proposal
Centralia College is awaiting details of President Barack Obama’s proposal calling for two years of free community college for a large number of students. According to a press release from Centralia College, details are limited at the time, but the president’s proposal includes two years of free college education for students who attend classes at least half time, maintain a C-plus average and make “steady progress” toward a degree.
Centralia Chronicle, Jan. 13, 2015


Standard & Poor’s issues negative outlook for nonprofit higher education
Standard & Poor’s Rating Services has issued a negative outlook for nonprofit higher education for 2015, citing, among other things, tension between rising costs to colleges and a focus on student affordability. In a report released on Thursday, the agency says the ensuing competition among colleges to attract top students will weigh heaviest on “those whose credit characteristics are already on the cusp of a lower rating.”
The Chronicle of Higher Education, Jan. 15, 2015

Want more kids in college? Check school counselor caseloads
The job of high school guidance counselor is a catch-all: Part graduation-credits overseer, testing administrator, shrink and higher-education shepherd. Seem like too much to do well? New research agrees. So while President Obama talks about getting more students into community college, and Washington state does its part with College Bound Scholarships, the people actually tasked with guiding kids in this direction — high school counselors — are spread much too thin. The result: Many states essentially expect students to “just figure it out,” says the Education Commission of the States, a think tank tracking education policy. But that is not happening.
The Seattle Times, Jan. 13, 2015

When colleges abandon phys ed, what else is lost?
Although colleges have built lots of swanky recreation centers in recent years, studies indicate that college physical-education requirements are at an an all-time low. Meanwhile, researchers have seen alarming trends among the college-aged population: significant rates of obesity, hypertension,depression, anxiety. Paradoxically, colleges are cutting back on physical education just as a growing body of research indicates that regular physical activity is key to cognitive development and helps people focus, process information faster, and remember things more easily.
The Chronicle of Higher Education, Jan. 12, 2015


Opinion: Budget complicated, but not these 6 bills
The Legislature is back in town, and given the budget challenges lawmakers face, they’re likely to be here far longer than their allotted 105 days. ... In the meantime, there is plenty of unfinished business to address for the majority of lawmakers not directly involved in budget writing ... Inmate education — It’s expensive to house people in prisons, which are already overcrowded. The state should lift the 20-year-old ban on spending state money on education in state prisons. Studies show that inmates who engage in prison education programs have a 43 percent lower recidivism rate.
The Bellingham Herald, Jan. 13, 2015

Inslee's State Of The State highlights partisan split in legislature
Washington Governor Jay Inslee said the state is at a crossroads and it’s time to reinvest. Those were key themes Tuesday as Inslee delivered his State of the State address before a joint session of the state legislature.
Northwest Public Radio, Jan. 13, 2015