President Caret praises Governor Patrick education proposal, underscores support for 50-50 funding
- The UMass System
Jan 15, 2013: UMass President Robert L. Caret today said that Governor Deval Patrick's call for more funding for education programs would help to "position the Commonwealth for economic growth and for long-term success."
"Governor Patrick is seeking to provide opportunity for all of our citizens and to ensure that Massachusetts will remain successful in the global knowledge-based economy," President Caret said.
Governor Patrick today called for renewed investment at all levels of the public education spectrum and said his education investment package, which will be part of the Fiscal Year 2014 budget he is expected to file next week, totals about $550 million in its first year and increases to nearly $1 billion annually over the next four years.
The Governor's proposal calls for $152 million in additional spending on public higher education in Fiscal Year 2014 and includes furthering the Commonwealth's support for the 50-50 approach under which the state and students equally split the cost of providing educational programs at public campuses.
President Caret proposed the 50-50 concept last year, calling for a turnaround in declining state funding, which he said was needed "to keep UMass affordable for Massachusetts citizens." He continued to make 50-50 a key part of his message when he spoke to chambers of commerce across the Commonwealth last year and during his most recent statewide bus tour.
Five years ago, in Fiscal Year 2008, the state provided 57 percent of the funding for UMass educational programs and students and their families contributed 43 percent via tuition and fees. In the current Fiscal Year 2013, the percentages are reversed, with students providing 57 percent and the state 43 percent of the $1.35 billion needed for educational programs.
"We believe that a 50-50 approach to funding our core educational budget is the best path for our students, their families and for the Commonwealth," President Caret said. "It is a fair and equitable approach and is the key to providing our citizens with a higher education option that melds quality with affordability."
Contact: Robert P. Connolly, 617-287-7073; Ann Scales, 617-287-4084