WKU ranks fourth in performance-based state funding

WKU ranked fourth this year in state performance-based funding from the Kentucky Council on Postsecondary Education. The chart (shown) ranks the top six public colleges in Kentucky by order of amount that will be received from state performance funding.

Nicole Ziege

The state of Kentucky divided $31 million to its public colleges based on performance, and WKU received the fourth largest amount of funding, according to information provided by the Kentucky Council on Postsecondary Education (KCPE).

WKU received about $3.75 million in state performance funding. The University of Kentucky earned the largest amount of funding, $9.1 million. The University of Louisville only received $2.5 million.

Northern Kentucky University earned $4.8 million, Eastern Kentucky University received about $3.4 million and KCTCS, Kentucky Community and Technical College System, earned the second largest amount, $6.8 million.

Murray State University received about $558,000. Kentucky State University and Morehead State University did not receive funding.

Ann Mead, WKU’s senior vice president for finance and administration, said in an email that the 2018-19 operating budget for WKU, as approved by the Board of Regents, included an estimated $4,414,000 for the university’s performance funding. She said the estimate was provided by the KCPE staff last spring.

Mead said in the email that WKU’s final performance funding total became about $3.75 million after the KCPE “finished the calculation and institutions verified the data.”

“We understood that the estimate was likely to change once finalized, and the variance is manageable,” Mead said in the email, referring to how the difference in performance funding will affect WKU’s operating budget.

This was the second year that the KCPE divided performance-based funding to all of the state’s public colleges using the Performance Funding Model. The three basic components of the model include student success, course completion and operational support. The model was signed into law as the new method of deciding state performance funding by Gov. Matt Bevin on Mar. 21, 2017.

William Payne, vice president of finance and administration at the KCPE, said that the new model allows the institutions to address changes over time for enrollment and programs, while taking into account the missions of the institutions. He said the performance funding will be added to each public college’s total state appropriations for 2018-19.

In WKU’s 2017-18 budget, the university received $3,830,200 in state performance funding and received $74,653,800 in total state appropriations. This year, WKU will earn $81,600 less in performance funding from the state.

In WKU’s 2018-19 operating budget, given the university’s performance funding amount, total state appropriations will account for $73,783,400, or about 19 percent, of the budget.

WKU will receive $870,400 less in total state appropriations in 2018-19 than the previous fiscal year. Mead said this was because the General Assembly passed a budget that reduced WKU’s regular appropriation and included a state funding reduction for the Gatton Academy of Mathematics and Science of $75,100, in addition to the change in the total allocation from the state’s performance fund.

Nicole Ziege can be reached at 270-745-6011 and [email protected]. Follow Nicole Ziege on Twitter at @NicoleZiege.