Governor Newsom Signs Legislation to Increase Transparency on Course Materials for College Students

The new law will help students by providing transparency on expenses associated with college courses on online schedules

SACRAMENTO, Calif., Oct. 23, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — Michelson Center for Public Policy (MCPP) commends Governor Gavin Newsom signing into law Assembly Bill 607 by Assemblymember Ash Kalra (D-San Jose), Isaac Bryan (D-Los Angeles), and Sabrina Cervantes (D-Inland Empire), which will increase transparency of course-related costs on online course schedules.

The legislation will help students plan and budget for college by providing clear and comprehensive information about the cost of textbooks, online homework codes, and other course materials for each class. Students spend an average of $938 per academic year on textbooks and course-related materials, according to the California Student Aid Commission’s 2021-2022 Student Expenses and Resources Survey.

“We stand in awe of Governor Newsom as he continues to champion college affordability by signing AB 607,” said Gary K. Michelson, M.D., founder and co-chair of the Michelson Center for Public Policy and the Michelson 20MM Foundation. “Working with courageous leaders like Assemblymembers Kalra, Bryan, and Cervantes, this is a win for all students as we eliminate the surprise costs of course materials after they register for classes.”

AB 607 will require California colleges and universities to provide students with a list of required materials such as textbooks and homework codes and the estimated prices on online course schedules. The list will be made available through the institution’s online course schedule.

“I am grateful for Governor Newsom’s signature on our AB 607, which will give students the valuable information they need to better plan and budget in college,” said Assemblymember Ash Kalra. “Especially while we’re seeing increased cost of living, tuition, and types of course materials, AB 607 will provide much-needed cost transparency that will have a positive impact on college students across California.”

“The Student Senate for California Community Colleges is committed to the fight for transparent college costs. With the rising costs of course materials and a financial aid system in dire need of improvement, students cannot continue waiting until after enrollment to find out the actual price of required materials,” said Chanelle Win, VP of Legislative Affairs, Student Senate for California Community Colleges. “AB 607 helps close price transparency gaps by requiring colleges to list course material estimates on online course schedules.”

AB 607 was sponsored by the Michelson Center for Public Policy and supported by faculty, students and institutions across the state. The legislation will go into effect on July 1, 2024.

Sydney Kovach
[email protected]

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SOURCE Michelson Center for Public Policy

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