Does Missouri have too many public colleges?

Lawmaker ponders consolidating governing boards

As Missouri leaders consider the future of higher education in the state, Senate Appropriations Committee Chairman Kurt Schaefer said earlier this month, perhaps it’s time to count the number of institutions the state has.

The Columbia Republican reminded members of the Legislature’s Joint Education Committee that the state has 13 four-year public colleges and universities.

“The bigger question is, should all those institutions exist?” he said later. “And it’s very politically charged, and people get very emotional about it.

“But, when you disassociate yourself from that and look objectively at it, we probably do have too many four-year institutions doing too much of the same thing.”

In Missouri, only the University of Missouri’s curators control a multiple-campus system. The nine other four-year campuses are independently supervised.

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