Umm, Sorry Boehner. We Think Taylor Swift Could Get Behind #FreeCommunityCollege.
ICYMI, Speaker of the House John Boehner put out a post last week on why Taylor Swift wouldn’t agree with President Obama’s proposal for two years of free community college. And while we don’t want to pretend to know T-Swift any better than Boehner does, we don’t exactly think his listicle is spot-on.
Beyond the fact that Tay-Tay just sent a super-fan $1,989 in order to help her pay off her student loans, here are twelve good reasons why Taylor (and the rest of us) can think #FreeCommunityCollege is a great idea.
- Yes, the #FreeCommunityCollege proposal is projected to cost approximately $6 billion per year for ten years. But the national student loan debt already exceeds $1.3 trillion.
- (So this is an investment in our students’ futures.)
- Public investment in higher education is vital to the performance of our economy; an educated workforce means employment, higher earnings, new and continued business development, and ultimately, higher tax revenues.
- The proposal would benefit 9 million students each year and save students an average of $3,800 in tuition per year.
- It’ll be done responsibly–community colleges will be expected to offer programs that are either 1) academic programs that fully transfer credits to local public four-year colleges and universities, or 2) occupational training programs with high graduation rates and lead to in-demand degrees and certificates.
- (This will help train our workforce so that we can compete in the global economy.)
- This proposal would allow the United States to join other countries like Germany, which recently ceased charging tuition at all public universities, the United Kingdom, and several other European nations that already offer free education.
- Yes, Obama wants to tax wealthier college savers to fund this. But, by and large, it would be a tax on 3% of the population who happen to be in the top 10% of U.S. household incomes, expanding opportunities for the middle class to grow.
- For low-income students, it would also have the practical effect of increasing the maximum Pell Grant by 50%.
- The proposed program attracts students who would not otherwise enroll in college and evens the playing field so that people of all income levels have a chance at higher education and middle-class jobs.
- Almost a century ago, the U.S. extended public education through twelfth grade. To keep up with the times, we now need to extend it through two years of community college, or “fourteenth” grade as President Truman formerly proposed.
- The state of Tennessee and the city of Chicago have already launched similar programs with bipartisan support.
Posted on 23 January 2015