Taxpayer funded college translates to more jobs
Published: Tuesday, January 24, 2012
Updated: Tuesday, January 24, 2012 22:01
College education is becoming a luxury in America. The costs are very high if you want to go to a four-year public school and even worse if you are one of the brilliant minds of the 21st century looking to attend a private university such as Harvard, Princeton, MIT, or Yale.
The average tuition for students looking to attend a four-year public school is $17,000 a year (6 percent increase from a year ago).
If you're gifted, you also need to be rich because private universities cost $40,000 a year in tuition.
These frightening costs have to be one reason that only 30 percent of Americans who begin attending college don't graduate.
If America took a page from countries such as Finland and Norway by embracing the idea of free universal college education for $15 billion to $30 billion a year, 18-24 year olds in America would be able to graduate in four years and more importantly, if those same students attend college, the unemployment rate would be dropped by 2 million people.
This brilliant idea for students would mean not having to take out student loans or having to work at a menial job while going to school, the college dropout rate would decrease dramatically and the rich could finally begin paying their fair share in taxes.
But the cold, hard truth about education is exactly the same as health-care reform. America can go in the right direction of universal college education, which I am in favor of, but that alone will not fix our broken education system.
If America wants to clean up the mess before starting any reform, this country can began with the repeal of the failed program No Child Left Behind, which was recently profiled for Time magazine.
NCLB set impossibly high standards, forced teachers to teach the tests as part of their lesson plan, leaving little room for anything else, and penalties range from teachers being fired, to the school day being extended and to the school being shut down altogether.
With NCLB being the major component of the lesson plan in schools, many students have been unable to take electives such as art and music, losing their right to be creative and leaving teachers unable to make the classroom educational and fun.
Creativity has been stolen from the classroom faster than you can say antidisestablishmentarianism in a sentence.
Also like health care, education is a process that all Americans should be involved in actively for improvement.
Parents need to take an active role in their education of their child, NCLB has to be repealed, special education has to be a priority in schools because not every student learns the same exact way, after-school tutoring needs to be available for students who need it, the classroom population in schools has to be reduced and when students decide to attend college, they should not have to worry about bills that could drive them out of school.
The idea of education for all is an excellent idea, but there has to be a united effort to achieve this goal. If America really cares about the next generation, they'll make the investment.