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Report 93-10: A Dream Deferred: California's Waning Higher Education Opportunities: A Statement by the California Postsecondary Education Commission

Published by The California Postsecondary Education Commission

June 1993

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At its meeting June 28, 1993, the California Postsecondary Education Commission adopted this policy statement on recommendation of its executive director, Warren Halsey Fox.

In the statement, the Commission warns of the consequences of continued underfunding of the State's world-renowned system of higher education. It notes, "until 1990, California had both the financial strength and political will to remain true to its promise of wide access to higher education. However, over the past three years, California has had to wrestle with enormous budget deficits, and deep budget cuts now occur annually and appear inevitable for the foreseeable future. As a result, at the very time that more students from more diverse groups than any time in California's history are becoming eligible for enrollment in the State University and the University, California's fiscal crisis has forced it to applaud their achievement on the one hand while simultaneously closing the doors to higher education on the other".

The Commission warns that "if California cannot find the wherewithal to increase that investment, it must develop equitable criteria for reducing enrollment and limiting higher education opportunities. . . . if access must be limited, the State should be guided by an explicit plan rather than by the haphazard consequences of underinvestment. California cannot continue to starve its higher education institutions of the resources they need to carry out their many missions while it anxiously awaits elusive relief from recessionary pressures."

In the statement, the Commission offers a number of proposals for reinvesting in the education of its youth, with specific recommendations for elected officials, educational institutions, and the voting public, including an overall assessment of the capacity of the State to generate the funds needed to meet the greatest public interests, and a performance-driven approach to educational finance.

Related Topics: Enrollment Demand and Capacity Analysis

Further information may be obtained from the Commission's Research Staff
(916) 445-1000 or via e-mail at

A copy of any publication may be requested from the Commission's Publications Unit
(916) 445-1000 or via e-mail at

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