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Kristen Soares Statement Regarding Governor Newsom’s May Revision of the 2019-20 Budget

 Statement Regarding Governor Newsom’s May Revision of the 2019-20 Budget Release

Kristen Soares, President, Association of Independent California Colleges & Universities

On behalf of the over 358,000 students attending the independent, nonprofit colleges and universities (ICCU), the Association of Independent California Colleges and Universities (AICCU) applauds Governor Gavin Newsom’s May Revision to the proposed 2019-20 state budget, as released this morning. The proposal maintains his commitment to California higher education access and affordability, including maintaining the maximum Cal Grant award for students attending ICCU institutions. AICCU will continue to strengthen efforts to grow the Associate Degree for Transfer pathway to the ICCU sector. We are committed to serving California community college students. We also thank the Legislature for their continued strong support of low-income students.

Cal Grant recipients must often overcome significant odds to apply, qualify, and attend the college or university that best suits their needs. AICCU will continue to work to ensure our Cal Grant student-parent community has the same availability of Cal Grant access award as their counterparts attending a public institution. The Cal Grant program has and should continue to fund all students, no matter where they choose to attend college, and to protect the program pillars of portability, access, and success.

AICCU institutions produce 44% of new teaching credentials annually and we applaud the governor’s commitment to California teachers with $44.8 million one-time non-Proposition 98 General Fund to provide training and resources for classroom educators. Along with an additional $89.8 million one-time non-Proposition 98 General Fund to provide an estimated 4,500 loan assumptions (repayments) of up to $20,000 for newly credentialed teachers to work in high-need schools for at least four years. We were pleasantly surprised at the coincidence that, during the same day that AICCU held a legislative briefing on teacher education programs specific to social emotional learning and restorative practices, the governor would announce support to build capacity toward these exact programs.

We appreciate our ongoing partnership with the Governor and Legislature to ensure all California students have equitable access to higher education that best fits their individual needs. The independent sector plays a key role in serving students and fulfilling the needs of the state’s workforce, and we will work vigorously to ensure our contributions are better understood.

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The Association of Independent California Colleges and Universities (AICCU) is comprised of 84 independent, nonprofit colleges and universities, which make up the Independent California Colleges and Universities (ICCU) sector. The ICCU sector plays a pivotal role in the development of the state’s model higher education offerings and in making California a symbol of innovation across the globe. Within California, ICCU institutions award 20 percent of all undergraduate degrees and over 50 percent of graduate degrees, making them the largest preparers of California’s advanced workforce.

Contact: Kristen Soares – (916) 446-7626

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