In 2007, the Missouri legislature passed the Higher Education Student Funding Act (HESFA). The act provides for the Coordinating Board for Higher Education and the commissioner of higher education to have a role in reviewing the tuition setting process.

Tuition is set by the governing board of each Missouri public institution of higher education. HESFA sets a limit on the amount by which an institution may increase its tuition based on the increase in the rate of inflation (CPI) and that institution’s existing tuition in relation to average tuition as defined by HESFA. Institutions that increase tuition above those limits must either return a portion of their state appropriations to the state or must ask the commissioner to waive the financial penalty in whole or in part.

In November 2011, Commissioner of Higher Education David Russell advised public institutions of the criteriathat would be used when considering requests to waive the financial penalty. In December 2012, Commissioner Russell sent a letterto presidents and chancellors advising them of their institutions' status regarding the average statewide tuition. When institutions begin the process of requesting penalty waivers, the commissioner of higher education has 45 days in which to respond after receiving a request.

Correspondence to and from individual institutions regarding HESFA matters are posted on this Web site. Click on the institution's name (below) to view the documents.

The public has 14 days to comment after an institution’s request for a waiver has been posted. Comments may be sent via e-mail to with “Tuition” as the subject line, or by mailing them to Missouri Department of Higher Education, P.O. Box 1469, Jefferson City, MO 65102-1469. Comments will be forwarded to the appropriate institutions.

Harris-Stowe State University

Lincoln University

Missouri Southern State University

Missouri State University

Missouri Western State University

Northwest Missouri State University

Southeast Missouri State University

Truman State University

University of Central Missouri

University of Missouri System

Linn State Technical College

Archive of 2012 Tuition Penalty Waiver Requests

Archive of 2011 Tuition Penalty Waiver Requests