Wednesday, January 6, 2016

How will Texas' Rising, low-income majority reach college?!?


"For which of you, intending to build a tower, does not sit down first and count the cost, whether he has enough to finish it—"
Luke 14:28

TPPF Policy Orientation: Today, the majority of students in K-12 education in Texas are 'low-income'...how are they going to pay for college?!?

Rep Mando Martinez (D - South Texas):
  • About 25% of the population in the Rio Grande Valley has 9th grade or less education level
  • The trades pay a lot more than liberal arts grads.
Dr. Ronald Towbridge:
  • 60% of K-12 students in Texas are 'low-income'
  • Hispanics have a higher college graduation percentage than whites.
  • 3 recommendations:
    • Colleges need to send academic and social advisors into local high schools.
    • Develop 'early college' high schools and expand dual-credit courses.
    • Encourage the legislature to focus on lower income students and don't give preference to elite schools.
      • Why should UT students get a bigger subsidy than community college student?!?
  • Re: UT/Houston turf war: Universities aren't supposed to expand duplicative programs.
    • "U.T. wants to be a hog and take the money from the University of Houston.
  • "An unspoken cartel now governs universities."
  • 50% of major university professors don't publish a single article in a year.
  • U.T. and A&M begging for money is grotesque.
  • Only 20% of the faculty at U.T. ever publishes anything.
Jorge Klor de Alva:
  • The longer students are in college, the less likely they are to finish.
  • College students HAVE to learn about personal finance.
  • Students need "timely and accurate" information about costs.
  • When higher ed. institutions fail, students end up in debt and unprepared for the workplace.
  • Large University endowments create perverse incentives when they are combined with government subsidies.
  • UT-Austin gets $6k per student in annual subsidies from the state.
  • Something about tax credits and panels of experts.
Author's Note: This panel did a good job identifying the problem, but they whiffed on the solution; the way to fix higher ed. affordability is to cut off their subsidies at the federal level and have the Texas Legislature repeal tuition 'deregulation.'

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