some text
Local high school juniors sit in a classroom last spring at Cleveland State Community College.

Meeting continues

The Board of Regents quarterly meeting continues at 9:30 a.m. today at Cleveland State Community College, George R. Johnson Cultural Heritage Center Theater.

College students with poor grade-point averages have the opportunity to start over if they transfer to a new school.

The Tennessee Board of Regents Academic Policies and Programs Committee approved policy changes that will allow transfer students to begin with a new GPA within the Board of Regents system, and recognize the grade of "D" as a passing grade at all institutions.

Credit will be given to all courses a student passes, including those that receive a "D." If a student transfers to another institution, grades from the previous institution will not be factored into his or her GPA at the new institution. Both changes were requested to make transfers between schools easier, according to interim Vice Chancellor Kay Clark.

"It was felt at this time that we should try to establish commonality with transfers," he said. "GPAs would begin anew with a transfer. Some institutions do it this way and some don't. The prevailing national practice is the way we're describing it, where the GPA would be excluded."

The changes will be put in place beginning summer in 2014.

The Regents Finance and Business Operations Committee also approved funding to complete five capital projects and for the planning stages of six additional projects -- including additions to the Tennessee Technology Center in Chattanooga -- as well as more than $45 million for maintenance needs Thursday.

The $45 million in maintenance is needed because of the aging buildings on Board of Regents campuses, according to Vice Chancellor David Gregory. The average age for a university building is 45, and the average age for community college buildings is 30.

Though the system has about $157 million worth of projects across all institutions, the maintenance request only represents the amount of projects that can reasonably be completed in a year, according to Gregory.

"What we don't want to do is have projects laying over from year to year," he said.

Additionally, the Regents Personnel and Compensation Committee approved systemwide compensation plans that allowed institutions with additional local funding to add to the 2.5 percent salary increase approved by the board in June.

Vice Chancellor David Sims said institutions were able to use the local funding in a variety of ways, with some institutions opting to increase salary levels beyond the 2.5 percent or adding one-time incentive payments up to $1,000.

"They really drove most of the money to faculty," Sims said.

Locally, Cleveland State Community College, Middle Tennessee State University, Tennessee Technological University and the Tennessee Technology Centers, except for the Chattanooga location, increased their salaries. The technology centers and MTSU also added one-time incentive payments. Chattanooga State Community College did not offer an increase above the 2.5 percent state raise.