Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin and the Legislature cut funding for state colleges and universities by 9 percent next fiscal year. Institutions of higher education are thus forced either to cut their costs or to raise students' costs to break even.
This is situation normal. Living within one's means is standard operating procedure in the private sector all the way down to the household level.
State colleges may raise tuition by 5 percent a year without seeking the approval of the state Higher Education Policy Commission, and many schools stayed below that ceiling.
But as the Daily Mail's Shay Maunz reported, West Virginia University, West Virginia State University at Institute, Fairmont State University, Shepherd University and Bluefield State College sought the commission's approval of larger tuition hikes.
After much study of colleges' proposals, the commission OK'd steeper tuition increases that ranged from 6 percent at WVU to 9 percent at WVSU.
Thus, while the average increase that West Virginia students will face next year is $380, those at WVSU will pay $490 a year more.
Some students will decide they just can't do it.
The most interesting aspect of the meeting was the indication that the people who manage institutions of higher education now understand that they are expected to do math.