Nothing gets the attention of consumers like the word free. In recent reports, state officials in a few states are considering the idea of a free community college education. This is being looked into, as it is seen as an effective way of getting more citizens to attend community college.
This proposed idea is also said to increase the number of people to attain a higher education. If this passes, states with free community college education will have workforces that are more appealing to employers.
Senator Mark Hass of Oregon said, “I think everybody agrees that with a high school education by itself, there is no path to the middle class.” According to information from the Oregon University System, people with only a high school degree earn less money than those who have a degree.
According to the results of a poll that was conducted last February, 94% of Americans agree that continuing to study after high school is important. However, only 23% think that education beyond high school is affordable.
Through the years, the cost of attending a community college has increased, due to lessened support from the states. On an average, a student will have to pay around $3,300 for a year of community college, and that amount does not include other fees and books. This amount is much cheaper than attending a university, but it is still a large amount to those who are on the fence about getting a higher education.
Governor Bill Haslam of Tennessee is proposing the “Tennessee Promise,” which states that the any high school graduate can get a $0 tuition for community college.
In Oregon, Governor John Kitzhaber has approved a bill that tasks the state commission to see if free community college is possible.
In California, no-cost community colleges were available until the 80’s – just before the fiscal crisis. The commission is also looking into the possibility of bringing back free education to the state.
Commission reports regarding the issue are expected to be done late this year. That gives state officials and lawmakers ample time to decide whether to go through with the idea next year.
Should Community College Be Free
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