September 28th, 2012
In a set of low-profile hearings, the House and Senate continued their respective looks at higher education issues in preparation for a potential reauthorization of the Higher Education Act (HEA), which is due to expire next year. As with other recent hearings, while short on headlines, they provided a glimpse into the interests of congressional committee members. In September, the House education committee held two hearings. The first was entitled, “Expanding the Power of Big Labor: The NLRB’s Intrusion into Higher Education.” The second was on “Assessing College Data: Helping to Provide Valuable Information to Students, Institutions, and Taxpayers.” Meanwhile, the Senate education panel looked at “Improving College Affordability: A View From the States.” A major theme raised by Senate witnesses was the importance of maintaining state expenditures on postsecondary education in order stabilize tuition expenses. This point was particularly stressed by Dr. Muriel Howard, president of the American Association of State Colleges and Universities (AASCU).