AN ACT TO IMPLEMENT VARIOUS POLICY CHANGES DESIGNED TO CREATE AN EDUCATIONAL ATTAINMENT GOAL FOR THE STATE; TO IMPROVE STUDENT OUTCOMES, INCLUDING REDUCING TIME TO DEGREE AT PUBLIC INSTITUTIONS OF HIGHER EDUCATION; AND TO RECOGNIZE THE NEED FOR AND VALUE OF NONDEGREE WORKFORCE CERTIFICATIONS.
Includes whereas clauses.
Adds a new Article 2, North Carolina Postsecondary Attainment Goal, to GS Chapter 116C. Sets out legislative findings. Requires the State to make significant efforts to increase access to learning and improve the education of more North Carolinians so that, by the year 2030, 2 million residents between the ages of 25 and 44 will have completed a high-quality credential or postsecondary degree.
Establishes the 18-member Joint Legislative Task Force on Postsecondary Attainment (Task Force). Requires the Task Force, in consultation with the Department of Public Instruction, the Community Colleges System Office, and The University of North Carolina System Office, to create an inventory of existing education programs and policies to assess the effectiveness of those programs and policies in order to determine how to facilitate the progress of the State in reaching the postsecondary attainment goal. Requires the study to consider work and recommendations of the My Future NC Commission and the Postsecondary Education Credentials Commission and any other issues the Task Force considers relevant. Requires the Task Force to begin meeting by October 1, 2019. Requires an interim report by March 1, 2020, and a final report by March 1, 2022, to the specified NCGA committee. Terminates the Task Force upon the earlier of March 1, 2022, or upon the filing of its final report.
Appropriates from the General Fund to the reserve account in the Office of State Budget and Management for enrollment adjustments for UNC $43,578,223 in additional recurring funds for 2019-20 to increase graduation rates and reduce time to degree by expanding the number of and enrollment in on-campus undergraduate summer courses offered on-campus at constituent institutions. Requires that in subsequent years the annual enrollment growth request from UNC reflect incremental changes in the actual credit hours completed in the fall, spring, and summer terms.
Appropriates from the General Fund to the UNC Board of Governors $10 million in recurring funds for 2019-20 to allocate to the State Education Assistance Authority (Authority) to provide summer scholarships to enable and encourage students enrolled in a UNC constituent institution or a North Carolina community college to enroll in summer courses. Requires giving priority to students with financial need who can use summer courses to earn 30 credits in the academic year or accelerate their path to a degree. Sets out who is to establish guidelines for the Authority for awarding scholarships. Requires the appropriated fund to be used as follows: (1) up to $7 million in recurring funds to be used to provide scholarships to students enrolled in constituent institutions and (2) up to $3 million in recurring funds to be used to provide scholarships to students enrolled in community colleges. Applies beginning with the 2020 summer term.
Appropriates from the General Fund to the UNC Board of Governors $4 million in recurring funds for 2019-20 to be allocated to the State Education Assistance Authority (Authority) to establish a scholarship program for students who receive an eligible college transfer associate degree (as defined) from a North Carolina community college and transfer to a UNC constituent institution within 12 months of receiving the degree. Requires the Authority to award eligible students a one-time scholarship in an amount of up to $1,000. Requires the UNC Board of Governors and the President to establish eligibility criteria for students, including specified criteria. Requires the Authority to adopt any necessary rules for administration of the scholarships. Applies beginning with the 2020-21 academic year.
Appropriates for 2019-20 from the General Fund to the UNC Board of Governors $150,000 in recurring funds and $200,000 in nonrecurring funds to support the work of the Transfer Advisory Committee (TAC) and the Military Credit Advisory Council (MCAC), to be used to accelerate efforts of TAC and MCAC to create new pathways programs, engage in site reviews, evaluate additional military occupations and courses for credits, and build a searchable database of military credit equivalencies.
Appropriates from the General Fund to the UNC Board of Governors $300,000 in recurring funds for 2019-20 to reduce student textbook costs through the curation and adoption by the UNC System Office of high-quality open educational resources materials for the most commonly taught courses across constituent institutions and community colleges. Requires giving priority to courses that universally transfer under the Comprehensive Articulation Agreement entered into by the Board of Governors and the State Board of Community Colleges.
Appropriates from the General Fund to the Community Colleges System Office $11,520,449 in additional recurring funds for 2019-20 for short-term workforce training continuing education programs that lead to a state- or industry-recognized credential.
Appropriates for 2019-20 from the General Fund to the Community Colleges System Office $5 million in recurring funds and $1.5 million in nonrecurring funds for the purchase of an online registration system for continuing education courses.
Appropriates for 2019-20 from the General Fund to the Community Colleges System Office $566,587 in recurring funds for the operation of the Forsyth Technical Community College Transportation Technology Center. Makes that same appropriation for the operation of each of the following: Guilford Technical Community College Aviation Campus, Richmond Community College Scotland County Campus, and Wake Technical Community College Research Triangle Park Campus.
Amends GS 115D-21.5 by adding criteria to determine the match amount to be paid for funds awarded for the NC Career Coach Program based on the tier designation of the county in which the community college's main campus is located.
Appropriates $2.8 million from the General Fund to the Community Colleges System Office in recurring funds for 2019-20 to support the NC Career Coach Program, to be used to place additional community college career coaches in public high schools.
Applies beginning with the 2019-20 school year.
Unless otherwise indicated, effective July 1, 2019.
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