Sen. Gaetz: It's time for more accountability in Florida's colleges, universities
The idea is not fully formed yet. But Florida Sen. Don Gaetz , the Niceville Republican who now oversees the Policy and Steering Committee on Social Responsibility, says it's time to make the state's higher education system more accountable to the public, both financially and academically.
"Last spring they asked for what amounts to a blank American Express card, and they got it," Gaetz told the Gradebook, referring to the university system's request for higher tuition charges. "Now I think it's important to address issues of performance."
People should be talking, for instance, about how many years students really need to graduate, he said. And how many psychology departments the state needs within an 8-mile radius. And how much bureaucracy can be shared by schools in the same service area.
Gaetz has begun conversations on such matters with other lawmakers. He made clear his intention during recent committee hearings, where he questioned chancellor Frank Brogan — who has made similar comments in the past. And from his committee post, which oversees higher education policy, Gaetz said he plans to initiate "substantive discussion on performance measures, both financial and academic" when lawmakers return to Tallahassee in the spring.