Kentucky: Council on Postsecondary Education

Council on Postsecondary Education

Press Release Date:  Thursday, February 03, 2011  
Contact Information:  Sue Patrick
Cell: 502-330-6596

The Council on Postsecondary Education approved Stronger by Degrees, A Strategic Agenda for Kentucky Postsecondary and Adult Education at its meeting this afternoon in Frankfort. Required by statute, the 2011-2015 strategic agenda and performance metrics will guide public policy priorities as articulated in the Postsecondary Education Improvement Act of 1997 (House Bill 1).

The new agenda builds on a decade of success resulting from House Bill 1 and intensifies the focus on four urgent policy areas: college readiness; student success; research, economic, and community development; and efficiency and innovation.

“The success of postsecondary and adult education across all four strategic policy areas is critical to improving Kentucky’s economy and quality of life of its citizens,” said Bob King, president of the Council. “This agenda brings focus and renewed energy to accelerate Kentucky’s progress.”

The agenda is the result of a year of work involving more than 100 contributors, including CPE members and staff, institutional planners, provosts, campus presidents, chief business officers, college and university faculty, and representatives from the business community. Others included staff from the Kentucky Department of Education, the Economic Development Cabinet, Education Professional Standards Board, Kentucky Higher Education Assistance Authority, and other agencies and organizations.

Eastern Kentucky University President Doug Whitlock, who serves as the convener of the Conference of Presidents, voiced support for the plan.

“Speaking for the presidents, I can say we appreciate both the process through which this agenda was developed and the finished product on which we reached consensus with President King,” said Whitlock. “The four areas of focus and the strategic objectives lay out a sound public policy agenda for Kentucky’s postsecondary education community. I truly believe the Commonwealth will be well-served.”

Stronger by Degrees is the third strategic agenda developed and implemented by the Council since passage of the higher education reforms.

The agenda includes updated mission, vision and value statements for postsecondary and adult education, statewide objectives and strategies to guide work in each of the four areas of policy focus, as well as performance metrics.

As part of the accountability structure, the Council will approve statewide and institution-level performance targets at its June meeting. Other components of the accountability system will be a new dashboard to gauge quantitative and qualitative progress, regular status reports to the Governor and legislature, and annual campus reports to the Council.

In other business, the Council:

  • Elected its leadership for 2011. Paul E. Patton was re-elected to serve as chair and Pam Miller was re-elected as vice chair.
  • Appointed three Council members—Glenn Denton, Dan Flanagan and Jim Skaggs—to serve one-year terms on the Council’s Executive Committee. Membership of the committee also includes the Council chair and vice chair.
  • Appointed Dan Flanagan to serve another term on the Board of the Lung Cancer Research Project.
  • Approved the process for setting tuition and mandatory fees at the public institutions.
  • Approved a revised administrative regulation to provide clear guidance to campuses for development of their campus diversity plans.
  • Approved a master of arts in religious studies at Western Kentucky University.

The Council also heard a variety of reports including an update from Dr. Terry Holliday, Commissioner of Education, and a report on efforts to improve the quality of K-12 teachers and school leaders from Dr. Phil Rogers, executive director of the Education Professional Standards Board, in addition to other reports.

The next regular meeting of the Council will be held April 28 at the University of Kentucky.

The strategic agenda is available at

Council meeting materials are available at


Kentucky’s postsecondary and adult education system is improving the economic vitality of the Commonwealth and the lives of Kentuckians. By raising educational attainment, Kentucky will attract higher wage and knowledge-based business and industry. The overall quality of life for Kentuckians will improve with higher incomes and levels of employment, better health, less obesity, more volunteerism, and lower crime and public assistance rates.


Last Updated 2/4/2011