Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Four reasons to be skeptical about Obama’s free community college proposal

The American Enterprise Institute

The plan has many forebears. Obama clearly took some inspiration from the Tennessee Promise, a program started by Republican Governor Bill Haslam that provides tuition-free community college to any Tennessee 12th grader who wants it. (We don’t yet know a thing about whether the program has helped students who would not have finished college otherwise.) Other voices have called for a federally-funded “public option” for higher ed. University of Wisconsin professor Sara Goldrick-Rab, proposed a free two-year option last spring. Before that, the American Federation of Teachers’ Robert Samuels published a book on the subject. What to make of it? I’ve written about the pitfalls to the free college idea a few times (see here, here, and the conclusion to Reinventing Financial Aid). To summarize some of the main ideas:

Read complete article here