Rhetoric vs. Reality on Higher Ed

I got an email alert from Student PIRGs with the lead in, “College just got less expensive.”

Really, that happened? Did anyone notice? Uh no.

What they meant is that the federal government will increase taxpayer subsidies for Pell Grants. Will that actually make college less expensive? Not if history serves as any guide – federal and state aid to universities has skyrocketed, and yet college has become more expensive. Indeed, it is pretty clear that taxpayer subsidies encourage (and reward) tuition hikes.

Furthermore, there is little reason to think that a federal government monopoly over loan service will save money, but several reasons why the legislation is so misguided and will continue the cycle we’ve been in for decades.

It is past time to stop throwing more money at universities and look to change the way we pay for higher education.