Higher Education

Florida College System (FCS)

Florida's colleges remain the primary point of access to higher education in Florida, with 65 percent of the state's high school graduates pursuing postsecondary education beginning at a Florida college, and 82 percent of freshman and sophomore minority students in public higher education attending one of Florida's 28 colleges.

Honors and Early College/Dual Enrollment programs attract some of the best and brightest minds and the colleges' open-door policies allow students who need remediation to get the skills they need for college-level courses. Many FCS students are the first in their families to attend college. Adult learners take college courses for personal and professional development, or to prepare for a new career.

More students enroll at Florida’s colleges to retool and retrain during economic downturns. We are more committed than ever to keeping our doors open, and to helping students get the training they need to improve their lives and help boost our state’s economy.

To learn more about the Florida College System, visit http://www.floridacollegesystem.com/. For more information about the Division of Florida Colleges, visit www.fldoe.org/schools/higher-ed/fl-college-system/.

Board of Governors, State University System of Florida

Florida's public university system includes twelve universities with an enrollment of more than 300,000 students, more than 60,000 faculty and staff, and an annual operating budget of more than $8.5 billion.

Article IX, Section 7 of the Florida Constitution was amended in 2002 to establish a statewide system of governance for all Florida public universities. As a result, the Florida Board of Governors was created in 2003 to operate, regulate, control, and be fully responsible for the management of the entire system consisting of eleven public universities. Responsibilities include defining the distinctive mission of each university and ensuring the well-planned coordination and operation of the system.

The Board includes seventeen members, fourteen of whom are appointed by the Florida Governor and confirmed by the Florida Senate for a term of seven years. The remaining members include the President of the Advisory Council of the Faculty Senate, the Commissioner of Education, and the Chair of the Florida Student Association. The Board of Governors appoints a Chancellor who serves as the chief executive and administrative officer of the university system.

Assisting the Board Members in their responsibilities is a professional and administrative office created in July 2005 and led by the Chancellor of the State University System. The office includes three major units - the Office of Academic and Student Affairs, the Office of Public Affairs, and the Office of Budget and Finance - as well as the offices of the General Counsel, Corporate Secretary, and Inspector General and Director of Compliance.

Commission for Independent Education 

The Commission for Independent Education has statutory responsibilities in matters relating to nonpublic, postsecondary, educational institutions. In keeping with the Florida Department of Education's goal of producing a seamless educational system, some of these functions include consumer protection, program improvement, institutional policies and administration, data management, and the licensure of independent schools, colleges and universities.

Office of Student Financial Assistance (OSFA)

The Florida Department of Education, Office of Student Financial Assistance (OSFA) serves as a guarantor for the Federal Family Education Loan Program (FFELP) and the administrator of Florida's scholarship and grant programs.  The OSFA mission is to facilitate higher education access and services by providing exemplary customer attention, comprehensive financial aid information, and convenient and efficient products.