Support Free Public Higher Education

The following is from the Campaign for the Future of Higher Education (CFHE). The CFHE website can be found at: http://futureofhighered.org/.

_________________________

Earlier this year, the Campaign for the Future of Higher Education released a working paper, “Making All Public Higher Education Free.” In that paper the author, Bob Samuels, demonstrated why such a proposal is both realistic and smart.

The idea seems to be gaining support.

As we reported in an “On the Issues” posting in June, Germany has returned to free tuition in its colleges and universities, after a brief experiment with charging tuition.

More recently the Republican governor of Tennessee, William E. Haslam, has proposed free community college in that state. The Tennessee Promise proposal is far from perfect, but it at least has the virtue of adding to a much-needed discussion about possible models for free higher education in this country.

As many have pointed out, free public higher education is no pipe dream if you look at actual numbers. All you have to do is get beyond the “austerity” approach to public funding for vital services.

The $165 billion from state appropriations and tuition and fees at all community and 4-year in this country is only 4% of the national budget.  The tuition piece of that, roughly $84 billion, which would be the only new expenditure for the government to pick up, makes up only 2% of the federal budget and roughly 10% of defense.

(For more details on costing, see “Going Back to Class: Why We Need to Make University Free, and How We Can Do It.”)

We urge those who care about access to higher education and about smart investment for our collective future to add their voices to the conversation and sign the petition. We need our national leaders to develop a plan to make public colleges tuition-free.

Please sign and pass it on.

5 thoughts on “Support Free Public Higher Education

  1. Pingback: NY Times op-ed suggestion: reduce college costs for the wealthy, um, “middle class” | history, CLASS

  2. Pingback: Free Public Higher Education? | publichighereducation

  3. Pingback: Undermining Affordability and Access to Higher Education | The Academe Blog

  4. Pingback: Markets, Technology, and the Purpose of Education | The Academe Blog

Your comments are welcome. They must be relevant to the topic at hand and must not contain advertisements, degrade others, or violate laws or considerations of privacy. We encourage the use of your real name, but do not prohibit pseudonyms as long as you don't impersonate a real person.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s