Friday, October 22, 2004

Regents upset over number in remedial college classes

By Cindy Kranz
Enquirer staff writer

CLIFTON - Disturbed by a report that nearly half of Ohio high school graduates took remedial courses in college in 2002, the Ohio Board of Regents on Thursday vowed to take steps to attack the problem.

The news was part of the High School to College Transition Report presented to the regents as they met at the University of Cincinnati.The regents also approved a budget to send to the state, but were silent on tuition.

The transition report noted that 40 percent of high school graduates entering public colleges or universities two years ago took at least one remedial course in English or math.

"High proportions of students are not fully prepared for the college experience," said Darrell Glenn, the regents' director of Performance Reporting & Analysis. "You could get better preparation for college if you could change the course-taking patterns in high school."

In this era of dwindling resources, Regent James Tuschman said, the cost of remediation is a major issue.

Regents asked Glenn to develop a comprehensive figure on the cost of remediation and ideas on strategies to deal with the problem. Also at the meeting, the board approved two budgets for fiscal years 2006 and 2007. One is a flat budget that keeps the state investment at the fiscal year 2005 level, about $2.5 billion.

The other is an initiative budget, which the regents say will help move higher education in the right direction. That calls for $2.6 billion in fiscal '06 and $2.8 billion in fiscal '07, a 12.7 percent increase over the two-year period. Tuition was not mentioned during the regents' discussions.

"The board was silent on it for now," said Rich Petrick, the regents' vice chancellor for finance. "They've had a lot of discussions at different committees. They may reconsider something later on . . . . This is a budget that will help keep tuition low. We think campuses will respond positively."

The Board of Regents is the coordinating body for higher education in the state.


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