Holiday Hours
Quick Start for:

Education

Education is the foundation for future economic growth. Developing a well-educated and highly skilled work force is essential for successful competition in the global economy.

The Central Texas region, like the rest of the state, has seen its public school population become more diverse and more Hispanic

Public Education

About 4.1 percent, or more than 190,000, of the state’s public elementary and secondary students attend school in the Central Texas region. The region is home to 110 public school districts with 467 campuses as well as ten charter districts and their 14 campuses.

The region’s number of students has risen in recent years, growing by 8.6 percent from the 2001-02 to 2007-08 school years. This increase represents a net gain of more than 15,086 students. The population of the region, state and nation rose by 7.1, 11.8 and 6.0 percent, respectively, over the same time period.1

During 2007-08, the region’s largest independent school districts (ISDs) by enrollment were Killeen ISD in Bell County, with more than 38,000 students, and Waco ISD in McLennan County, with more than 15,000 students. The smallest districts were Rapoport Academy Prep School in McLennan County, with 51 students, and Transformative Charter Academy in Bell County, with 59 students.

Exhibit 39

Ethnicity of Public School Students, Central Texas Region, 2001-02 vs. 2007-08 School Years

Ethnicity 2001-02 2007-08
White 53.6% 48.9%
Hispanic 21.6% 26.4%
Black 22.7% 22.2%
Asian/Pacific Islander 1.7% 1.9%
Native American 0.4% 0.5%

Note: Totals may not equal 100 percent due to rounding.

Source: Texas Education Agency.


Exhibit 40

2007-08 Accountability Ratings, Central Texas School Districts

Rating Region Statewide
Exemplary 3.5% 3.5%
Recognized 23.9% 26.8%
Academically Acceptable 71.7% 66.6%
Academically Unacceptable 0.9% 2.6%
Not Rated: Other 0.0% 0.6%

Note: “Not Rated: Other” includes campuses such as alternative education programs or early childhood education centers. These data include charter districts. Totals may not equal 100 percent due to rounding.

Source: Texas Education Agency.

Exhibit 41

2007-08 Accountability Ratings, Central Texas School Campuses

Rating Region Statewide
Exemplary 5.3% 12.2%
Recognized 34.1% 34.4
Academically Acceptable 47.2% 42.8%
Academically Unacceptable 4.8% 2.5%
Not Rated: Other 8.6% 8.1%

Note: “Not Rated: Other” includes campuses such as alternative education programs or early childhood education centers. These data include charter districts.

Source: Texas Education Agency.

The Central Texas region, like the rest of the state, has seen its public school population become more diverse and more Hispanic (Exhibit 39). Still, the region is less ethnically diverse than the statewide student population, which is 47.2 percent Hispanic, 34.8 percent white, 14.3 percent black, 3.4 percent Asian/Pacific islander and 0.3 percent Native American.

The region has seen an increase in its number of economically disadvantaged students. In 2001-02, nearly 85,000 students or 48.2 percent of total enrollment were identified as economically disadvantaged. In 2007-08, more than 101,000 students or 53 percent of the region’s students were classified in this way, slightly less than the statewide average of 55.3 percent.

Accountability

Central Texas school districts compared somewhat favorably with statewide averages in the 2007-08 district accountability ratings established by the Texas Education Agency (TEA). The region exceeded the state average for Academically Acceptable ratings, and fared favorably with the statewide average for districts deemed Academically Unacceptable (Exhibit 40).

In August 2008, TEA rated four of the region’s 113 districts as Exemplary; 27 as Recognized; 81 as Academically Acceptable; and one as Academically Unacceptable.

Central Texas also exceeded statewide averages in the number of campuses rated Academically Acceptable (Exhibit 41).

Of the 475 campuses in the region’s districts, including charter schools, 25 were rated Exemplary; 162 were rated Recognized; 224 were Academically Acceptable; 23 were Academically Unacceptable; and 41 were listed as “Not Rated: Other” in 2007-08.

Six of the region’s ten charter districts were rated Academically Acceptable while four were rated as Recognized. Five charter district campuses were rated as Recognized, eight as Academically Acceptable and one as Academically Unacceptable.

In 2008, among Central Texas districts that teach all grade levels, Crawford ISD in McLennan County had the highest percentage of students passing all Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills (TAKS) tests, at 92 percent. Itasca ISD in Hill County had the next largest share, at 89 percent. (An average for the Central Texas region is not available because TEA reports district data only as percentages.)

Within the region, all graduating students in Richland Springs and Cherokee ISDs took college entrance exams in the 2007-08 school year, greatly outpacing the statewide average of 65.8 percent. Of the 111 Central Texas districts for which data are available, 74 had participation rates above the state average.

College Station ISD had the highest percentage of test takers scoring at or above the criterion score used by TEA to measure college readiness, at 50.8 percent; slightly more than 82 percent of its graduating class took at least one of the tests. Across the state, 27.1 percent of students who took at least one of the tests scored at or above the criterion score.

In the 2006-07 school year, 10,452 students graduated from the region’s public high schools, representing about 4.3 percent of the statewide total for that year.

Outcomes

Exhibit 42

2007 High School Graduates, Central Texas Region vs. Statewide

Graduation Plan Region Statewide
Distinguished Achievement 9.7% 11.1%
Recommended 61.4% 66.8%
Minimum/IEP* 28.8% 22.1%
Distinguished Achievement & Recommended as Percent of Total 71.2% 77.9%

Note: Totals may not equal 100 percent due to rounding.

Source: Texas Education Agency.

In 2008, 78 percent of Central Texas residents over the age of 25 had a high school diploma, a GED and/or some higher education, slightly above the statewide average of 75.7 percent.4

In the 2006-07 school year, 10,452 students graduated from the region’s public high schools, representing about 4.3 percent of the statewide total for that year. Killeen ISD had the largest number of graduates with 1,480, while the Temple Education Center had the smallest number, with just three graduates.

About 9.7 percent of the region’s students graduated under the state’s most stringent graduation plan, the Distinguished Achievement plan; 61.4 percent under the Recommended plan, which is the required plan; and 28.8 percent under the Minimum plan, a less stringent graduation plan that requires both parental and school approval, or under an Individual Education Plan offered through Special Education (Exhibit 42).

School Finance

In the 2007-08 school year, the Central Texas region’s total school spending per pupil, including debt service, averaged $9,930, which is 2.3 percent less than the statewide average of $10,162.

Twenty-three Central Texas districts spent more than 20 percent above the statewide average. Another 51 districts, however, including the region’s charter schools, spent less per pupil than the statewide average.

Excluding charter districts, which do not receive funding from local taxes, the region’s lowest total tax rate in 2007 was that of Leon ISD, at 89.7 cents per $100 of property value. Rogers ISD levied the highest rate at $1.52. The statewide average was $1.18 per $100 of value; 98 districts in the Central Texas region had higher rates.

The region generated a lower percentage of its school revenue from local taxes (35.7 percent) than the statewide average (45.8 percent). Dew ISD received the largest portion of its school funding from local taxes (73 percent), while Westphalia ISD had the lowest share (11.3 percent). The region’s share of revenue from other local sources, such as equity transfers and tuition, was a bit higher than the state’s, at 7.1 percent versus 6.7 percent. Malone ISD gained 31.1 percent of its revenue from these other local sources, for the highest share in the region; Penelope ISD received the lowest share for its non-charter schools, at 2 percent.

Coolidge ISD had the lowest property wealth per pupil in 2007, at $95,519, while Dew ISD led the region with $2,963,265 per pupil. Dew ISD has high property values from oil and gas resources, with a relatively low number of students. The regional average was $279,975, or 16 percent lower than the statewide average of $333,420.

Texas law requires districts with relatively high property wealth per pupil to share it with less-wealthy districts through a process called “equity transfers.” In 2007, 11 districts in the Central Texas region transferred roughly $52.2 million, an average of $282 per pupil. Fairfield ISD transferred the largest total amount ($15.6 million), while Dew ISD had the highest per-pupil transfer ($25,935).

Among the non-charter districts, Priddy ISD received the largest share of revenue from the state in 2008, at 76.4 percent. Franklin ISD received the smallest state share, at 10.4 percent. The regional average for 2007 was 44.6 percent, slightly higher than the statewide average of 37.8 percent. The region also derived a higher share of its school funding from federal aid than the statewide average, at 12.5 versus 9.8 percent.6

Teachers

In examining teacher salaries across the region, it should be remembered that average salaries vary with length of teacher tenure as well as wage levels. District A, for instance, may have a higher average salary than District B because it has a higher percentage of experienced teachers, even though its wage levels for various years of experience are lower than District B’s.

The average Central Texas teacher salary in 2007-08 was $3,803 below the statewide average of $46,179. Orenda Charter School had the highest average salary at $46,412.

Average salaries in the region rose by 13.5 percent from 2002-03 to 2007-08, compared with a statewide average rise of 15.5 percent over the same period. Mumford ISD had the highest increase over this period at more than 37 percent.

The region’s teacher salaries accounted for more than 28 percent of total district expenditures from all funds in 2007-08, about half of the statewide average of 64.1 percent. Cherokee ISD had the highest percentage of teacher salaries to total expenditures, at 47.4 percent. All of the districts in the region devoted a lesser percentage of expenditures to teacher salaries than the statewide average.

Exhibit 43

Central Texas Higher Education Institutions

see alternative

Source Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board.

View text for Central Texas Higher Education Institutions

In 2007-08, the region had a lower number of students per teacher, at 13.7 versus the statewide average of 14.7. Star ISD had the lowest number of students per teacher, at 4.4.7

Higher Education

The Central Texas region has 11 institutions of higher education (Exhibit 43) that administer 15 campuses across the region. Seven of the region’s 20 counties have at least one higher education campus (Exhibit 44).8

The region’s only four-year public university, Texas A&M University (TAMU), is located in Brazos County. Tarleton State University operates Tarleton State University-Central Texas in Killeen, an upper-level institution serving junior, senior and graduate students.

Tarleton State-Central Texas is expected to become Texas A&M University-Central Texas by September 2009. The Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board must certify that Tarleton State University-Central Texas has reached a total of 1,000 full-time student equivalents (FTSE) enrollment in order to become a free-standing university.12 The name change then must be approved by the Texas A&M University System Board of Regents.

Total enrollment in the region’s higher education institutions rose by 18.7 percent between 2000 and 2008.

Exhibit 44

Higher Education Campuses, Central Texas Region

Institution City County
Central Texas College Killeen Bell
Tarleton State University – Central Texas Killeen Bell
Temple College Temple Bell
Texas A&M University System Health Science Center College of Medicine Temple Bell
University of Mary Hardin-Baylor Belton Bell
Hill College – Clifton Campus Clifton Bosque
Blinn College – Brenham Campus Brenham Washington
Blinn College – Bryan Campus Bryan Brazos
Texas A&M University College Station Brazos
Texas A&M University System Health Science Center College of Medicine College Station Brazos
Hill College Hillsboro Hill
Navarro College – Mexia Campus Mexia Limestone
Baylor University Waco McLennan
McLennan Community College Waco McLennan
Texas State Technical College – Waco Bellmead McLennan

Source: Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board.

The College of Medicine of the Texas A&M Health Science Center (TAMHSC) teams with Scott & White in Temple and the Central Texas Veterans Health Care System in Waco in its clinical education programs. TAMHSC also has clinical partnerships with the Carl R. Darnall Army Medical Center in the Temple-Fort Hood area and the Brazos Family Medical Residency in Bryan-College Station.13

Central Texas has six community college districts –– Central Texas College, Temple College, Hill College, Blinn College, Navarro College, and McLennan Community College – with a total of seven campuses in six counties. In addition, the region has a branch of Texas State Technical College in Waco.

Finally, Central Texas is home to two private universities, Baylor University in Waco and the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor in Belton.


Exhibit 45

Central Texas Region, Fall Headcount Enrollment 2000 and 2008

Public Institutions Fall 2000 Enrollment Fall 2008 Enrollment Enrollment Change Percent Change
Texas A&M University 44,026 48,039 4,013 9.1%
Regional Total – Public Universities 44,026 48,039 4,013 9.1%
Statewide Total – Public Universities 414,626 509,136 94,510 22.8%
Blinn College 12,025 15,602 3,557 29.7%
Central Texas College 6,650 9,481 2,831 42.6%
Hill College 2,506 3,712 1,206 48.1%
McLennan Community College 5,721 7,855 2,134 37.3%
Temple College 3,381 5,178 1,797 53.1%
Texas State Technical College – Waco 3,928 5,093 1,165 29.7%
Regional Total – Two-year Public Colleges 34,211 46,921 12,710 37.2%
Statewide Total – Two-year Public Colleges 447,998 617,507 169,509 37.8%
Private Institutions Fall 2000 Enrollment Fall 2008 Enrollment Enrollment Change Percent Change
Baylor University 13,719 14,541 822 6.0%
University of Mary Hardin-Baylor 2,590 2,688 98 3.5%
Regional Total – Private Universities 16,309 15,745 -564 -3.5%
Statewide Total – Private Universities 107,681 115,048 7,367 6.8%
Fall 2000 Enrollment Fall 2008 Enrollment Enrollment Change Percent Change
Regional Total 2-Year Institutions 34,211 46,921 12,710 37.2%
Regional Total 4-Year Institutions 60,335 65,268 4,933 8.2%
Regional Total Higher Education 94,546 112,189 17,643 18.7%

Note: Regional data do not include enrollment data for branch campuses located in Central Texas that are part of a main campus located in other regions, since they are not reported separately to the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board. Data for all institutions includes health-related and independent institutions.

Source: Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board.

Exhibit 46

Three- and Six-Year Graduation Rates, (First-time, Full-time, Credential-seeking Students), Central Texas Community Colleges vs. Statewide Average Fiscal 2000 and 2007

Institution Fiscal 2000 3-year Fiscal 2000 6-year Fiscal 2007 3-year Fiscal 2007 6-year
Blinn College 13.8% 37.4% 8.2% 48.4%
Central Texas College 13.2% 27.2% 6.8% 27.7%
Hill College 21.5% 29.4% 20.1% 30.1%
McLennan Community College 10.8% 31.4% 12.9% 36.4%
Temple College 9.6% 33.1% 9.5% 36.5%
Texas State Technical College – Waco 28.6% 37.0% 26.5% 38.4%
Statewide Average 10.8% 25.7% 11.1% 30.8%

Source: Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board.


Exhibit 47

Degrees Awarded, Central Texas Region Public Universities Central Texas Region vs. State, Fiscal 2000 and 2007

Institution Fiscal 2000 Fiscal 2007 Difference % Change
Texas A&M University 9,508 10,627 1,119 11.8%
Statewide Total 78,954 102,897 23,943 30.3%

Source: Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board.


Exhibit 48

Degrees and Certificates Awarded, Central Texas Region Two-Year Colleges Fiscal 2000 vs. 2008

Institution Fiscal 2000 Fiscal 2008 Difference Percent Change
Blinn College 645 1,093 448 69.5%
Central Texas College 1,242 1,390 148 11.9%
Hill College 280 449 169 60.4%
McLennan Community College 651 793 142 21.8%
Temple College 364 466 102 28.0%
Texas State Technical College – Waco 961 899 -62 -6.5%
Regional Total 4,143 5,090 947 22.9%
Statewide 37,395 55,809 18,414 49.2%

Source: Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board.

Enrollment

In fall 2008, 112,189 students were enrolled in the Central Texas region’s public and private colleges and universities. Enrollment in public and private four-year universities accounted for 58.2 percent of the total, while the remaining 41.8 percent were enrolled in two-year institutions.

Texas A&M University has the largest enrollment, with 48,039 students. The institution with the smallest enrollment was Hill College with 3,712 during fall 2008.

Total enrollment in the region’s higher education institutions rose by 18.7 percent between 2000 and 2008. Enrollment at two-year institutions rose by 37.2 percent compared with just 8.2 percent for universities. In numerical terms, universities added 4,933 students while two-year college enrollment rose by 12,710. For the state as a whole, public university enrollment increased by 22.8 percent, while enrollment at public two-year institutions, including community colleges, rose by 37.8 percent.

Among the region’s institutions, Hill College had the largest percentage enrollment growth between 2000 and 2008, adding 1,206 students for a 48.1 percent increase (Exhibit 45). Numerically, TAMU added the greatest number in student population in the region during 2000 to 2008 increasing by 4,013 students.14

Accessibility

Of 18,816 first-time applicants for undergraduate admission at TAMU for Fall 2008, the institution accepted 76.4 percent, less than the statewide average of 85.9 percent. The share of students accepted by TAMU who were at the top of their high school graduating classes was more than twice the statewide average share. Of 14,379 students accepted to TAMU, 44 percent were in the top 10 percent of their high school graduating classes, compared with 20.4 percent statewide.15

Outcomes

Because some degrees require more than four years of study, and because some students may need more time to graduate, the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board (THECB) compares four-year and six-year graduation rates to measure university outcomes. TAMU’s four- and six-year graduation rates were 42.6 percent and 81.6 percent, respectively, in fiscal 2007, much higher than the statewide averages of 25.1 percent for four-year and 57.2 percent for six-year graduates.

Since many community college students go on to a university to obtain a four-year degree, THECB compares three-year and six-year graduation rates to measure community college outcomes. Texas State Technical College-Waco (TSTC-Waco) had the region’s highest three-year graduation rate in fiscal 2007, while Blinn College had the highest six-year graduation rate. Blinn College, McLennan Community College, Temple College and TSTC-Waco ranked above the statewide average for both three- and six-year graduation rates in fiscal 2007. Hill College also outpaced the state average for three-year graduation rate and closely matched the state’s six-year graduation rate of 30.8 percent (Exhibit 46).

From fiscal 2000 to fiscal 2007, TAMU’s number of degrees awarded annually rose by 11.8 percent, to 10,627. The statewide average increase was 30.3 percent (Exhibit 47).

Over the same period, the number of degrees and certificates that Texas community colleges awarded increased by 49.2 percent. Among the region’s six community colleges, Blinn College had the sharpest increase in degrees awarded, at 69.5 percent (Exhibit 48). Central Texas College awarded the greatest number of degrees in fiscal 2008 with 1,390, followed by Blinn College at 1,093 and TSTC-Waco with 899.17

Affordability

Exhibit 49

Public Universities Total Revenues Sources, Texas A&M University and Statewide, Fiscal 2006 and Fiscal 2008

Texas A&M University
Revenue Source Fiscal 2006 Fiscal 2008 Percent Increase
Tuition and fees $223,224,830 $276,913,639 24.1%
State appropriations 304,385,246 346,882,403 14.0%
Federal funds 75,041,156 81,908,778 9.2%
Institutional funds 155,587,750 237,695,541 52.85%
Total Revenue $758,238,983 $943,400,361 24.4%
Statewide
Revenue Source Fiscal 2006 Fiscal 2008 Percent Increase
Tuition and fees $2,000,693,293 $2,400,749,604 20.0%
State appropriations 2,599,091,546 2,949,486,914 13.5%
Federal funds 1,161,122,338 1,260,930,090 8.6%
Institutional funds 1,375,219,819 1,638,009,659 19.1%
Total Revenue $7,136,126,996 $8,249,176,267 15.6%

Source: Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board.

From 2002-03 to 2008-09, TAMU’s annual estimated costs for a student’s tuition and fees, based on 15 credit hours per semester, rose by about 60 percent, to $7,899. The statewide average for undergraduate tuition and fees rose by about 80 percent, to $6,193.

For the 2007-08 school year, the estimated annual cost of tuition and fees, books and supplies, room and board, transportation and personal expenses at TAMU (based on 15 credit hours in both fall and spring) was $19,950. The statewide average was $18,389.

The cost of the region’s private universities is higher than the statewide average for such institutions. For 2008-09, the estimated annual cost of tuition and fees, books and supplies, room and board, transportation and personal expenses was $40,144 at Baylor University and $30,000 at the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor. The statewide average for private institutions was $29,859.

From 2002-03 to 2008-09, resident tuition and fee changes at the region’s six community colleges ranged from an increase of $127 at Central Texas College to $972 more at McLennan Community College. Meanwhile, the statewide average increase for community colleges was about $675 or about 60.3 percent. In 2008-09, tuition and fees in the region were lowest at Central Texas College, at $1,470, and highest at McLennan Community College, at $2,100.18

The total cost of attending the Central Texas region’s community colleges in 2008-09, including tuition and fees, books and supplies, room and board, transportation and personal expenses for two semesters, ranged from $10,012 for McLennan Community College to $15,410 for Hill College. The statewide average for community colleges was $12,510.19

Funding

Total revenue for TAMU, including tuition and fees, general revenue appropriations, federal funds and institutional funds, rose by 24.4 percent from fiscal 2006 to fiscal 2008, compared to a statewide average rise of 15.6 percent for public universities. (Exhibit 49).20

Total appropriations for the 2008-09 biennium increased for all of the region’s community colleges. Between 2002-03 and 2008-09, statewide appropriations for all community colleges rose by 8 percent (Exhibit 50).21

Exhibit 50

General Revenue Appropriations, Public Community and Technical Colleges Central Texas Region and Statewide, Fiscal 2002-2009

Institution 2002-03 Biennium 2004-05 Biennium 2006-07 Biennium 2008-09 Biennium Percent Change 2002-03 to 2008-09
Blinn College $40,123,832 $36,796,275 $37,744,228 $41,139,958 2.5%%
Central Texas College $35,986,374 $35,886,775 $38,724,256 $40,026,227 11.2%
Hill College $9,982,342 $10,715,664 $11,069,698 $12,995,631 30.2%
McLennan Community College $23,068,770 $23,793,868 $26,555,732 $27,607,204 19.7%
Temple College $12,624,594 $12,165,215 $12,310,414 $14,101,299 11.7%
Texas State Technical College – Waco $49,706,313 $38,934,116 $48,373,644 $50,904,009 2.4%
Public Community & Technical College Statewide Total $1,709,158,821 $1,622,141,439 $1,763,114,757 $1,845,292,200 $8.0%

Source: Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board.


Contact hours – the time a professor actually spends in the classroom with students – for community, state and technical colleges rose 21.1 percent statewide from fall 2000 to fall 2007. In the Central Texas region, contact hours increased at all community colleges with the exception of Central Texas College. The largest increases were at Temple College with 42.9 percent, Hill College at 31.6 percent and McLennan Community College at 23.9 percent (Exhibit 51).26

Exhibit 51

Community, State and Technical Colleges, Contact Hours Fall 2000 vs. Fall 2007, Central Texas Region

Institution Fall 2000 Fall 2007 Percent Change 2000 to 2007
Blinn College 2,362,101 2,542,934 7.7%
Central Texas College 1,245,528 1,041,056 -16.4%
Hill College 541,840 712,832 31.6%
McLennan Community College 995,104 1,233,189 23.9%
Texas State Technical College – Waco 4,133,422 4,302,780 4.1%
Temple College 585,182 836,092 42.9%
Public Community & Technical College Statewide Total 73,370,630 88,822,358 21.1%

Note: Contact hours include only those with a full- or part-time faculty instructing by lecture, lab or practicum. Classes taught at an inter-institutional location are excluded.

Source: Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board.



Baylor University School of Education.

Baylor University School of Education.

PHOTO: Baylor University

Endnotes

All links were valid at the time of publication. Changes to web sites not maintained by the office of the Texas Comptroller may not be reflected in the links below.

Required Plug-ins