On Monday, November 6, I attended a meeting of the Statewide Higher Education Master Plan Committee. The purpose of the meeting was to discuss governance recommendations for higher education from the Governance Subcommittee. In short, after careful consideration of a variety of governance models the subcommittee recommended that we retain our current governance structure, but strengthen the position of HED Secretary, giving the Secretary more authority to intervene when he/she considers it necessary. In return for giving the Secretary more authority, the Subcommittee recommended that institutions of higher education play a role in selecting the Secretary. There is likely to be disappointment in some quarters that the Subcommittee did not call for a more dramatic reorganization of higher education governance.
On Thursday, I traveled to New Mexico Tech with Chief of Staff Melody Munson-McGee for the final General Education listening session. Once again, there was good attendance and animated discussions. Concerns centered on assessment and meta majors. After 90 minutes of discussion, we were able to agree that general education reform can proceed independently of the development of meta majors, because general education informs the curriculum of meta majors, but meta majors do not inform or constrain general education curriculum models.