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Education

Regents Promise Tuition Predictability

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Students at Iowa's three public universities didn't learn this year's tuition amounts until June.

Iowa’s Board of Regents -- frustrated by declining and unpredictable state support for the state universities -- is hoping to give students, future tuition predictions.

In a statement during the Thursday’s regents’ meeting, Board President Mike Richards said, “at our November meeting, we intend to discuss a multi-year tuition model with a baseline percentage increase for in-state undergraduates for the next several years.”  Richards said the forecast will begin with the 2019-2020 academic year.   He added, “specifics on the potential tuition increases will come at that meeting.”

A year ago at this time, Richards and Regent Larry McKibben promised that the regents would set tuition for the current academic year in late 2017. That didn’t happen. The regents did not establish tuition for the Fall 2018 semester at the University of Iowa, Iowa State University, and the University of Northern Iowa until June 2018, two months before the semester began.

That delay was caused by the uncertainty of state revenues, which resulted in the Iowa legislature appropriating less than the regents were requesting for university state support.

In his statement Thursday, Richards said that while the multi-year tuition model will be unveiled in November, the board will not set the actual tuition rates for Iowa resident undergraduate students until early 2019, presumably while the Iowa legislature is still in session.