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Monday, December 13, 2004

Jacob Dipietre
(850) 488-5394

Florida's Community Colleges Continue to Lead the South
State leads in retention rates and degrees conferred among members of SREB

TALLAHASSEE - Governor Jeb Bush and Education Commissioner John Winn today announced that the Florida Community College System (FCCS) once again is leading in retention rates and degrees conferred among the sixteen members of the Southern Regional Education Board (SREB). Community College Chancellor David Armstrong commended the commitment and dedication of the faculty and staff at each of the twenty-eight colleges within the System.

"Florida's community college students stay in school longer and graduate in higher numbers than their peers in the region," said Governor Bush. "Our colleges provide innovative programs and a stimulating learning environment that encourages students to reach their potential."

Each year the SREB gathers information on different facets of higher education. Among these are retention rates. With a retention rate of 70 percent, the FCCS was 8 points above the SREB average. Florida produced more associate degrees and certificates than any other state in the region, which includes Texas and North Carolina.

Commissioner Winn added, "Our community colleges offer a blend of caring that gives students the support they need to succeed and high expectations for student achievement that we all know pays big dividends. They are truly models for postsecondary education nationally."

FCCS accomplished this while maintaining low tuition rates and high faculty salaries. The annual tuition rate for the FCCS was only $1,695. This rate ranks Florida eleventh out of the sixteen member states. The average faculty salary was $46,370, more than $2,500 above the SREB average and fourth in the region.

For more overall and state-by-state information, visit:

For school-specific information on Florida's community colleges, visit: