Florida College System

Tallahassee Community College

This year’s Florida Legislative Session provided millions of dollars to the state’s universities. But the state’s 28 colleges saw their funding slashed and the president of Tallahassee Community College is urging Governor Scott to block the cuts with his veto pen.

Sarah Mueller

Legislators and community college presidents are pleading with leaders in the Florida House and Senate to spare community colleges from budget cuts. The House and Senate have very different budget proposals. But college presidents said they don’t like either one.

The Florida College System

The Florida College System could be revamped if the Senate gets its way.  Senate President Joe Negron has railed for years against what he sees as mission creep: community colleges stepping into roles traditionally held by universities. And now there's a bill that would begin to cut down on that expansion.

Hillsborough Community College

A Florida appeals court is weighing the constitutionality of rules making it harder for state college professors to get what amounts to tenure. A faculty union argued today before Tallahassee’s First District Court of Appeal that the State Board of Education lacks authority to change tenure rules so drastically.  

College professors are fighting what United Faculty of Florida Executive Director Ed Mitchell calls "Draconian" changes to the requirements for earning continuing contracts; those are the state college version of tenure.

Florida Senate

Baccalaureate degree programs at Florida’s community colleges are under examination this year. The schools have been allowed to create advanced programs they say are aimed at meeting local workforce needs. But some lawmakers believe the schools have gone overboard.

Florida State Senator Bill Galvano (R-Bradenton) has introduced a proposal that would take the approval of community college baccalaureate degrees away from the state board of education—and give it to the Legislature.

Florida Department of Education

This year Florida’s colleges are trying to get in on the state’s performance funding scheme for higher education.

The colleges want Florida lawmakers to award them additional funds based upon how well they do in terms of graduation rates and other metrics: similar to how universities now get extra dollars. Florida College System Chancellor Randy Hanna says what the colleges will be evaluated on is still under consideration:

Students enrolling in Florida colleges have a new tool online to help them make more informed decisions about which school and which field of study to pick. The Smart College Choices Web application is a free tool that reports in-state employment rates and earnings potential for about 300 fields of study offered at Florida schools.

There are more than a million students in Florida’s 28 state and community colleges. The system has experienced rapid growth in the past few years as public universities froze enrollment and cut budgets. The college system has been the cheaper alternative to a university but college officials say it’s time the state gave them more money.