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Education

College Enrollment Among African American, Latino Students Low In Texas

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Ryan Poppe | Texas Public Radio
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State lawmakers learned Wednesday how Texas is struggling to help African American and Latino students secure college or career readiness degrees.

RaymundParedes, the state commissioner of higher education, said to the Senate’s Higher Education Committee that his commission still has a lot of progress to make.

“For Hispanic students, we’ve gone up 7.2 percent, but we are going up for African Americans but not nearly enough as we must,” Paredes said.

The goal of the state’s 60x30 Higher Education Program is to have 60 percent of all college-aged Texans on track towards a college or career-readiness degree by the year 2030.

Some committee members were not happy, including state Sen. Royce West, D-Dallas.

“You represent the institutions responsible for making certain that we achieve the goals of 60 by 30, and I’m not seeing that. From a policy standpoint, if we’re having issues in this area — what, you’ve been around 10-years now — ... we haven’t seen significant change at all,” West said.

The committee asked Paredes and the commissioners of the Texas Education Agency and the Texas Workforce Commission to present their plan for boosting minority enrollment within two weeks.

Ryan Poppe can be reached at rpoppe@tpr.org or on Twitter @RyanPoppe1