If you have questions or comments regarding the work of the Higher Education Funding task force, please send your remarks to info@dhe.mo.gov.


During the March meeting, HEF task force members worked to further develop an overall approach for developing funding requests.

Maintaining Quality and Opportunity

The "base" of the pyramid represents the highest priority. If the base is fully funded, additional monies may be used for strategic initiatives. If the base and at least one strategic initiative are fully funded, additional monies may be used for performance funding.

This component of funding requests will include the following, which are listed in order of priority:

  • An inflationary increase at approximately the rate of the CPI
  • Funding to address "equity" with a long term goal of providing similar support for similar programs
    • This funding should address "equity" among sectors as well as within sectors
    • Within-sector equity funding will be distributed as determined by each sector
    • There should be a "hold harmless" approach
  • Funding to allow institutions to keep up with increased costs associated with enrollment growth
  • Funding to improve the overall "adequacy" of funding for public higher education in Missouri, with a long term goal of catching up with benchmarks

Each of these components would be phased in over multiple years

Improving Quality and Opportunity, Expanding Service and Opportunity

Strategic Initiatives
  • Strategic initiatives will make up about 1 to 1.5% of the higher education budget each year.

  • The first year will be clearly outlined. In the future, the group that develops the higher education budget may draw from the list of strategic initiatives developed by HEF and HEF-T - but they may also develop new strategic initiatives to address new priorities.
  • For FY 10, Preparing to Care will be the strategic initiative unless that program is funded in the FY 09 budget.

Rewarding Quality & Results

Performance Funding
  • Performance funding should reward maintenance of excellence as well as improvement
  • Performance funding could be based on assessments of:
    • Student satisfaction
    • Job placement/workforce development, with one possible measure being what students earn before and after higher education
    • Student learning, with one possible measure being licensure pass rates
    • Transfer (rewarding both sending and accepting institutions)
  • Measures for Performance Funding
    • Licensure exam pass rates
    • Degrees and certificate productivity (possibly including sensitivity to the value of completion of the 42-hour block)
    • Student learning outcomes
    • Student engagement and satisfaction (as measured by surveys)
    • Sector- or institution-specific measures (i.e., workforce preparation measures for 2-year institutions)


During the February HEF meeting, task force members created the graphic below to illustrate the forming investment strategies. Investment Strategies for Public Higher Education

Maintaining Quality and Opportunity

  • Base of the Pyramid - represents an institution's base budget
  • Request would encompasses the increased fixed costs that must be met in order to maintain the current level of programs and services
  • Key components: utilities, basic facility maintenance, benefit expenses, compliance, salaries, technology, library materials

Improving Quality and Opportunity

  • Strategic Initiative funding to improve key services that are currently provided.
  • Examples:
    *Access to Success - additional support to acknowledge the costs of serving academically at-risk students.
    *Teachers for the Future - additional support for teacher preparation programs.
    *METS - additional support for attracting and retaining students in key academic fields.

Expanding Service and Opportunity

  • Strategic Initiative funding to expand or add new programs or services.
  • Examples:
    *Preparing to Care - funding directly tied to the production of additional graduates in professional health care fields.
    *Teachers for the Future - funding tied directly to the provision of a new mentoring program for recently graduated teachers.

Rewarding Quality and Results

  • Performance Funding linked to the performance indicators required by SB 389.
  • 2 Statewide Measures
    *Degrees/certificates awarded (quantitative)
    *Licensure exam pass rates (qualitative)
  • 1 Statewide measure that may be sector-specific (to be determined)
  • 2 Institutional measures (to be determined)

November - December - January

During the group's November and December meetings, HEF task force members continued enthusiastic discussion committed to the progress of key strategic initiatives that will ultimately, along with performance measures and adequacy safeguards, serve as the foundation for a new higher education funding policy.

The HEF-T technical advisory group met separately on January 4th to further develop draft funding strategies for each of the strategic areas identified by the task force and presented the following at the January 7 meeting of task force members. Components of the information below will be updated to adequately reflect group discussion and direction, then shared at the February 7 meeting.

Workforce Needs for Regional and Global Competitiveness: METS Initiative

What is METS?

The METS Initiative is a program designed to develop the critical mass of human talent needed to support strategic industries key to Missouri's future regional and global competitiveness. The METS Initiative:

  • Meets future workforce needs in occupational fields requiring education, training, and skills development in science and technology (i.e., mathematics, engineering, technology, and science)
  • Provides support for employers needing focused workforce training programs
  • Supports economic growth in cluster industries essential to Missouri's future
  • Helps attract, develop, and retain new businesses strategically important to the state's economy
  • Ensures Missouri's economic competitiveness, regionally and globally.
  • Missouri's P-20 Council has identified improvement in science and technology (METS) competencies as critical to meeting the workforce demands in occupational areas linked to key industries in the state.
  • Sustained growth and innovation are keys to maintaining competitiveness in the global economy and require integrated investments in science and technology (METS).
  • The state's abilities to remain economically viable in the long-term require investing in workforce training systems that provide workers the opportunity to improve technical skills and abilities to compete in the 21st century.
  • The ability of the state to attract new businesses and support entrepreneurial ventures is dependent on the availability of a highly educated workforce equipped with technological expertise and skills that enable them to be productive in a fast-paced knowledge oriented economy.
  • There is a growing gap between degree completions in science and technology fields and projected employment needs in Missouri.
  • A technical skills gap exists in the state's incumbent workforce relative to skills required to meet the needs of targeted emerging industries in the state.
How does METS work?
  • Each participating institution receives a portion of the METS Initiative funds based on its proportionate share of total degrees and certificates awarded (i.e., certifications, associate, baccalaureate, and graduate degrees) in mathematics, engineering, technology, and science, including degrees in math and science education.
  • A portion of the METS Initiative funds are distributed through incentive grants as a match for revenue provided by third party entities for specialized workforce training and development programs.
  • A portion of the METS Initiative funds are distributed through competitive grants that support collaborative partnerships between higher education and the business sectors in the development of entrepreneurial ventures, innovation, and technology transfer applications.

Access To Success

What is Access to Success?

Access to Success is a strategic initiative to improve the participation and academic success of "at-risk students" attending Missouri's colleges and universities. The desired outcomes of this initiative are:

  • Increased participation in higher education of traditionally underserved populations
  • Increased retention rates of "at-risk" students from the first to the second year of college
  • Improved competencies and mastery of basic verbal, quantitative, and analytical skills
  • Increased associate and baccalaureate degree completions of "at-risk students"
  • Improved time to degree completion for all associate and baccalaureate degree recipients

"At-risk" students are defined as those students with a lower chance of succeeding in colleges due to cultural, socio-economic, or academic background. For purpose of allocating Access to Success funds, an "at-risk" student is defined as any student whose personal or family income would be at or below the 40th percentile for the state, or a student with ACT/SAT sub-score(s) in mathematics, reading, and English (or an equivalent test) below college readiness benchmarks indicating a low probability of academic success without appropriate remediation.

Time to degree is defined as completion of an associate or baccalaureate degree program within the normal timeframe for a particular program, typically two years for an associates degree and four year for a baccalaureate degree.

Why Access to Success?
  • To close the educational gap between underserved populations and those traditionally served by higher education.
  • To incentivize colleges and universities to provide programming support to assist "at-risk" students, so they persist and complete their degrees.
  • To ensure that undergraduates possess the requisitions skills and abilities to be effective workers and engaged citizens.
  • To incentivize colleges and universities to help undergraduate students complete their degree in a timely fashion.
How does Access to Success work?
  • Each participating institutions receives a portion of the Access to Success funds based on its proportionate share of Pell-Grant recipients enrolled.
  • Each participating institution receives a portion of the Access to Success funds based on its proportionate share of academically "at-risk" students as determined by ACT college readiness benchmarks in mathematics (score 22), reading (score 21), and English (score 18).
  • Each participating two-year institution receives a portion of the Access to Success funds based on its proportionate share of students transferring to a four-year institution with a grade point average of _____.
  • Each participating institution receives a portion of the Access to Success funds in proportion to its share of total statewide associate or baccalaureate degrees awarded to "at-risk" students.
  • Each participating institution receives a portion of the Access to Success funds in proportion to its share of total statewide associate and baccalaureate degrees earned by all students in a timely manner.
  • Access to Success funds may be used at the discretion of each institution to improve support services to "at-risk" students.

Promoting Economic Development and Fostering Vibrant Communities: Research and Service

What is the Research and Service Initiative?

The Research and Service Initiative is a program of targeted investments in basic and applied research and service activities that enhance the economic viability of the state and that address "real life" issues facing people and their communities. Desired outcomes include:

  • Creation of new products and services for commercialization; increases in patents; and establishment of spin-off companies.
  • Revitalization of business districts, support for small business entrepreneurs, and enhanced tech transfer.
  • Safe healthy communities and civic renewal and engagement by citizens in community-based institutions and organizations.
  • Improved environmental conditions (i.e., infrastructure, energy conversation, renewable resources, etc.).
  • Improved health for Missouri citizens through the creation of new therapeutic regimes and diagnostic procedures.
Why Research and Service Initiative?

The state's economic growth is directly linked to the amount of research and development spending in the state.

  • The results of basic and applied research are directly tied to the commercialization of intellectual property (i.e., patents) which frequently attracts venture capitalists and leads to the creation of new spin off companies.
  • Breakthroughs in life science research produce new delivery modes and
  • Applied research, particularly in the social and behavioral sciences, brings practical solutions to issues facing communities (e.g., crime, poverty, substance abuse, neighborhood revitalization, teenage pregnancy, and literacy).
  • Basic and applied research provides the solutions to significant infrastructure issue such as homeland security, utilities and telecommunications, and transportation.
  • The outcomes of university research contributions to: objective information to inform economic and public policy; technology transfer of newly developed knowledge to industry; support of new entrepreneurial futures; technical advisory assistance to small businesses; and establishment of joint university-private enterprises.
How does Research and Service Initiative work?
  • Allocation of Research and Service Initiative funds will be based on actual externally sponsored research expenditures in the prior fiscal year.
  • Participating institutions will receive a percentage of the eligible direct and indirect costs, plus equipment purchased as part of a research grant, and expenses incurred as a subcontractor.
  • The balance of the Research and Service Initiative funds will be distributed on the basis of competitive applications for projects supporting economic development and community service priorities of the state.
  • Peer-review of applications will be coordinated by the Missouri Department of Higher Education.

Teachers for the Future

What is Teachers for the Future?

The Teachers for the Future initiative is a program to improve K-12 student learning outcomes. The initiative seeks to accomplish this outcome by stimulating the development of teacher education programs of excellence at selected universities; in turn, these programs would become exemplars for other institutions and would offer lessons learned about best practices, thus improving the quality of teacher graduates produced by a broad range of universities. This program will:

  • Produce teacher education graduates with higher levels of mastery of subject matter and pedagogical content knowledge that will allow them to teach more imaginatively and productively.
  • Ensure that teacher candidates acquire and demonstrate mastery of literacy and numeracy skills, and that they are prepared to teach them, irrespective of the level at which they will be teaching.
  • Ensure that elementary school teachers learn the core structure of multiple disciplines and are prepared to teach content knowledge in a variety of subjects.
  • Provide teacher candidates with skills and abilities to evaluate and use new technologies to facilitate teaching and learning.
  • Educate teacher candidates on the significance of cultural diversity and its impact on effective teaching.
  • Provide an integrated clinical-practice and a two-year residency mentoring induction experience for all graduates of teacher education programs.
  • Establish strong partnerships between K-12 schools and university teacher education programs.
Why Teachers for the Future?

A well-educated workforce and citizenry begins with having well-educated and trained teachers in the public school system. Without highly qualified teachers expertly trained in their subject matter field, the likelihood of improving the educational level and workforce readiness of future generations is questionable. According to a recent report from the Carnegie Corporation:

... recent research based upon thousands of pupil records in many different cities and states establishes beyond doubt that the quality of the teacher is the most important cause of pupil achievement. Excellent teachers can bring about remarkable increases in pupil learning even in the face of server economic or social disadvantage. Such new knowledge puts teacher education squarely at the focus of efforts to improve the intellectual capacity of school children in the United States. More than ever, the nation needs assurance that colleges and universities are educating prospective teachers of the highest quality possible.

In Missouri:

  • Two-thirds of 7th to 12th graders are taught by qualified teachers, while among top-performing states 80% are taught by qualified teachers.
  • Eighth graders perform poorly on national assessments in reading, writing, mathematics and science relative to top-performing states.
  • A very small percentage of 11th and 12th graders score well on Advanced Placement tests.
  • One-fourth of 9th graders do not graduate from high school.
  • A significant percentage of "at-risk" elementary and secondary students fail to complete their public school education.
How does Teachers for the Future work?
  • Each participating teacher education program receives a percentage of the Teachers for the Future funds based proportionately on the number of teacher education graduates scoring above minimal qualifying exam scores on Praxis Series for teacher licensure and certification.
  • Participating teacher education programs use these funds to implement innovative changes in the teacher training curriculum corresponding to current best practices in the profession, e.g., Teachers for a New Era initiative sponsored by the Carnegie Corporation.
  • Participating teacher education programs use these funds to develop partnerships with K-12 public schools; to support expanded clinical practice experiences; and to establish residency mentoring support for new teacher education graduates for the first two years of their teaching experience.
  • Funds are used to support ongoing research and evaluation of learning outcomes of teacher education graduates and to continue improvement and make relevant teacher preparation curriculums.
  • Each participating two-year Associate of Arts in Teaching (AAT) degree program receives a percentage of these funds based on the number of graduates who successfully obtain an AAT degree or who transfer to a participating four-year teaching program.
  • Each participating program receives funds to develop and provide a two-year mentoring program to new graduates of teaching to increase the retention rate of teachers in the classroom.

Protecting Investments: Maintenance and Repair

What is Protecting Investments?

Protecting Investments is a strategic initiative to retain the value of the physical assets in public higher education and improve the teaching and learning environment for students, faculty, and staff at Missouri's colleges and universities.

Protecting Investments will also recognize that the provision and maintenance of up-to-date computer systems is a basic utility, nearly as important as power and water on today's college campus. With additional resources under this initiative, graduates will be better prepared to compete successfully in the 21st Century.

The desired outcomes of this initiative are:

  • Updated facilities to address critical safety and accessibility issues
  • Increased usage of environmentally friendly and efficient utility systems
  • Increased support for the preservation of facilities to prevent early deterioration and more costly replacement
  • Increased support for addressing deferred maintenance and repair to bring buildings and equipment back up to standards
  • Increased support for the replacement and modernization of information technology
Why Protecting Investments?
  • To preserve facilities, so they may be more effectively used in educational and research pursuits.
  • To remain competitive in attracting and retaining students by providing high quality facilities and equipment.
  • To provide an environment that supports enhanced teaching, learning, and research.
  • To replace aged equipment that may limit the research capabilities in public higher education institutions.
  • To increase the availability of technology for students and faculty to aide in the development of innovative teaching, research, and development.
How does Protecting Investments work?
  • Each institution receives on-going funding equal to 1.5% of the replacement value of capital equipment and facilities for annual maintenance and repair.
  • Each institution receives a one-time deferred maintenance and repair appropriation based on their backlog of such costs.
  • Each institution receives on-going funding to replace or update computers and other technological infrastructure.


Following the October meeting the Task Force'’s agenda has been focused on three areas: strategic initiatives, performance measures, and adequacy/equity. The November meeting was dedicated to strategic initiatives and the Task Force coalesced around four general areas as potential initiatives to be part of a new funding policy for higher education. The following initiatives were sent to the HEF-T group for operationalization:

  1. Economic Development - It was agreed that strategic initiatives under this heading could tie into the Workforce 2025 report and other statewide studies, encompass both applied and theoretical research, address entrepreneurship (including community or downtown revitalization), and address the need to improve the most basic of workforce skills.
  2. METS - Strategic initiatives in this area could focus on increased degree production at all levels, address the needs for better/increased teacher education in METS fields, and involve close collaboration with the K-12 system, especially in terms of generating interest and preparation for METS fields among younger students. There could be additional costs associated with attracting, supporting, and expanding institutional capacity in these fields.

  3. Access and Success for At-Risk Students - The Task Force is interested in building an initiative around the need to improve and expand the services provided to underserved minorities, adult learners, those with marginal academic preparation, and other students who often require costly support services to successfully participate in higher education.

  4. Missouri's Health Care Needs/Evolving Market Needs - The Task Force discussed this area on a variety of levels. Primarily, all agree that the Preparing to Care initiative is very important and is the top strategic initiative currently proposed by the higher education community. If unfunded in FY 2009, Preparing to Care would likely remain a prominent strategic initiative for FY 2010. Yet, owing to the possibility that it may be addressed in FY 2009, the Task Force discussed several other angles that may encompass evolving social issues that higher education has a role in addressing. These include additional health care provider needs beyond or in addition to those in Preparing to Care. There may also be other acute areas of need in Missouri related to gerontology and services for the elderly that may be addressed through an investment in higher education.