January 22, 2020
Partners weighs in on decision to end Illinois tuition freeze

Following a decision last week by the board of trustees of the University of Illinois System to approve a tuition increase for the first time in six years, Partners' president James Toscano weighs in on the decision in an Education Dive article.

The decision increases tuition by 1.7 percent for in-state freshman at the Chicago and Urbana-Champaign campuses and by 1 percent at the Springfield campus, with both rates below the increase of inflation.

While these rate increases fall below the rise of the inflation index, the system board's simultaneous decision to extend the contact of system President Timothy Killeen's and increase his salary by forty percent sends the "wrong message" to consumers, according to Toscano.

James Toscano, president of Partners for College Affordability and Public Trust, a group that advocates for lowering college costs, told Education Dive in an email that leaders of the system "should be applauded" for holding the line on tuition for six years.
But it should concern all Illinois residents that the trustees are breaking the trend, even though the increase is below the rise in the consumer price index, Toscano wrote in his email.
"Trustees are sending the wrong message to the public about their priorities by giving a whopping pay increase to the president at the same time they ask students to pay higher tuition bills," he wrote.

Read the full article in Education Dive HERE.