If you are an habitual reader of this blog, you know that I have been involved with a group nationally working on issues that are our issues in Pennsylvania, but also common through the nation.
On Monday we decided to call the group the Campaign for the Future of Higher Education: CFHE. You don’t want to know the pains involved in just coming up with an inoffensive name. If we did. 🙂
Here are the group’s seven principles —
1. Higher Education in the 21st Century must be inclusive; it should be available to and affordable for all who can benefit from and want a college education.
2. The curriculum for a quality 21st century higher education must be broad and diverse.
3. Quality higher education in the 21st Century will require a sufficient investment in excellent faculty who have the academic freedom, terms of employment, and institutional support needed to do state-of-the-art professional work.
4. Quality higher education in the 21st century should incorporate technology in ways that expand opportunity and maintain quality.
5. Quality higher education in the 21st century will require the pursuit of real efficiencies and the avoidance of false economies.
6. Quality higher education in the 21st Century will require substantially more public investment over current levels.
7. Quality higher education in the 21st century cannot be measured by a standardized, simplistic set of metrics.
The group has agreed to follow the California Faculty Association (CFA — they represent the state university faculty) in having a day of action on April 13: it’s called “Take Class Action” day.
The state PR and mobilization committees are working on putting together a series of campus events to support this. You will hear more (you may have noticed that our recent attention has been elsewhere — Monday’s rally looks to have hundreds here and a speakers list longer than a boa constrictor).
But we want to be part of the national conversation.
And this is it.
We expect a national press conference “sometime around graduation in May…maybe June.” So, look for that.
Because we need to worry about the future of higher education; right now, with all the attacks on it, it doesn’t look like it’ll be the higher education we all received.