On Bill Bennett’s radio show this morning, Governor Pat McCrory presented a plan to change higher education funding so that it is more responsive to workforce needs. (I think that is the general idea, but I may be wrong. Higher education is not my area of expertise.)
I have a few random thoughts about the concept:
1. It sounds like the governor’s policy staff did not prepare him for the interview or, at least, did not prepare him to talk about higher education. An education advisor or two might help in that regard.
2. The idea of using workforce measures as a basis for funding is not a terrible one, but I have no idea how it could be done in an objective way.
3. McCrory’s idea presupposes that certain majors produce predictable workforce outcomes. But people are not the sum total of their major or college degree.
4. There are a multitude of other problems that he could have addressed – too many kids go to four-year colleges, require remediation, drop out, take more than four years to complete their degree, etc. Couldn’t we develop a system that funds state universities based on these and other metrics?