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HBCUs, HSIs on House Agenda

HBCUs, HSIs on House Agenda
By Charles Dervarics

House Republicans say increased support for minority-serving colleges and universities will be one of their 10 major education goals for the new Congress.

Leaders of the House Education and the Workforce Committee listed aid to Black colleges and Hispanic-serving institutions among three priorities specifically focused on higher education. The other two were reducing red tape for colleges and improving quality and accountability in higher education.

The other seven issues on the committee’s priority list were mainly outside higher education. They included early childhood services, teacher training, implementation of K-12 reform and improvements in special education and vocational education.

In releasing their list, Republicans noted that HBCUs and HSIs have received “unprecedented federal support under President George W. Bush — support committee Republicans will work to expand in the 108th Congress” that convened in early January.

House GOP leaders have increased links to minority-serving colleges in recent years, particularly through efforts by former Rep. J.C. Watts, R-Okla., to reach out to Black colleges. However, Watts retired from Congress effective this year.

In terms of specific legislation related to these goals, efforts to reduce red tape at colleges may get the most immediate consideration. Republican leaders re- introduced a bill in January, the FED UP proposal, to streamline some rules and regulations.

For more information about the agenda, visit the House committee’s Web site at .

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