Arkansas Education

A partnership between Arkansas’ two major universities will allow students to get a dual degree in poultry sciences.   

Arkansas leads the nation in poultry production.  With Tyson Foods in northwest Arkansas and Ozark Mountain Poultry and Peco Foods in eastern Arkansas, more graduates are needed in the field of poultry science. 

Charlie Collins
Brian Chilson / Arkansas Times

Another concern is being raised about legislation that would require public universities and colleges in Arkansas to allow licensed faculty and staff to carry concealed handguns on campus.

John Pijanowski, chair of the campus faculty senate at the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville, believes the campus carry bill could be in conflict with existing laws regarding guns in churches.

Chris Hickey / KUAR News

State Education Commissioner Johnny Key has approved Little Rock School District Superintendent Michael Poore’s proposal to close three schools and repurpose a fourth. A group of community activists and parents, meanwhile, is condemning the decision.  

The plan calls for the closure of Franklin Elementary, Wilson Elementary and the Woodruff Early Childhood Center. Under the plan, the alternative school Hamilton Learning Academy would move to the Wilson campus.

State Sen. Gary Stubblefield (R-Branch) after his primary move-up bill failed to advance out of committee.
Jacob Kauffman / KUAR

The public would have less access to information about public schools and colleges under a bill passed by the Arkansas Senate. State Senator Gary Stubblefield, a Republican from Branch in northwest Arkansas, presented his bill on Thursday. He said exempting security information from the Freedom of Information Act is a necessary safeguard in dangerous times.

Higher Education Funding
Governor's Office

Gov. Asa Hutchinson has signed into law a bill that links college and university funding to factors such as the number of students who complete their degrees.

Hutchinson on Wednesday signed the bill that requires the state to adopt a "performance-based" model for funding higher education rather than basing the money on enrollment.

Hutchinson has said he'll call for increasing higher education funding by $10 million in 2018 if the plan was approved.

Rep. Mark Lowery (R-Maumelle) and Arkansas Department of Higher Education Director Maria Markham at a committee hearing. File photo 2017.
Michael Hibblen / KUAR News

Arkansas lawmakers have given their final approval and sent to the governor to a plan to link college and university funding to factors such as the number of students who complete their degrees.

The Senate on Monday voted 32-1 for a bill requiring the state to adopt a "performance-based" model for funding higher education rather than basing the money on enrollment. Gov. Asa Hutchinson has said he'd call for increasing higher education funding $10 million in 2018 if lawmakers approve the plan.

The president of the University of Arkansas System, Donald Bobbitt, says he is working with schools to gather information on the effect of President Trump's order on immigration.

Rep. Mark Lowery (R-Maumelle) and Arkansas Department of Higher Education Director Maria Markham at a committee hearing. File photo 2017.
Michael Hibblen / KUAR News

A bill to restructure how Arkansas’s higher education funding is determined is advancing to the state Senate. The switch from enrollment-based funding to productivity-based funding comes at the direction of Governor Asa Hutchinson’s office. State Representative Mark Lowery, a Republican from Maumelle, carried the bill on the House floor Monday.

Little Rock School District buses
Wikipedia

The Arkansas Department of Education is recommending two Little Rock School District campuses be removed from the academic distress category. The LRSD schools are among a list of ten released by the department on Monday. The entire district in Blytheville is also recommended to be cleared of the designation. 

The State Board of Education will ultimately decide on the recommendations at a meeting February 9.

Governor Asa Hutchinson radio address
Office of the Governor

Gov. Asa Hutchinson is concerned about how President Donald Trump’s trade protectionist talk could affect Arkansas’ economy. He also opposes a bill creating education savings accounts from tax-deductible donations because a fiscal impact statement shows it would cost the state budget $10 million in its first year.

During a Thursday (Jan. 26) press availability in his office, Hutchinson was asked about the impact of President Trump’s presidency on global trade following the announcement that Mexico’s president has cancelled a meeting between the two world leaders.

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