Tag Archive: education

Harvard Professor: Slums are a Good Thing

If you want to know what’s wrong with America, here’s part of the answer. This Harvard professor thinks slums are not a bad thing. They are a sign of opportunity. People like this educate the future leaders and Wall St. tycoons. All too often college professors live in a fantasy world. This is why elected leaders shouldn’t be limited to Ivy League universities.
Harvard professor thinks slums are a good thing.

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Subprime Private Student Loans: No Way Out

Source:

Although private loans make up a relatively small slice of the roughly $1 trillion in outstanding student debt, a new report from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau in conjunction with the Department of Education shows that these loans have the ability to harm borrowers’ credit and future financial security at a disproportionately high rate.

A $5 billion industry just over a decade ago, the private student lending market ballooned to four times that size before the economic crisis hit. It shrank back to $6 billion last year, but that contraction still leaves a huge number of students and former students saddled with expensive debts they can’t afford to repay. It’s gotten so bad that government officials are calling on Congress to permit private student loans to be wiped out in bankruptcy.

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For poor children, trying hard is not enough

I am the granddaughter of an elementary school cook and a woman who cleaned other people’s homes. Both my grandmothers worked hard and didn’t earn much money, but they encouraged their children to get an education.

Although starting from limited economic circumstances, my parents both earned a college education and were able to attain a middle-class lifestyle to raise me and my siblings. I, their daughter, went on to receive a Ph.D. Unfortunately, this type of upward mobility is much less likely for the children of maids and school cooks today.

A decent job and a decent life should be a possibility for anyone who makes an effort. As a nation, this was more likely in our past than in the present. A college education should be affordable to anyone who is willing to do the work, but that is no longer our reality. As the likelihood of a college degree and economic security becomes less attainable for a significant portion of the population, the future of the United States will be in jeopardy.

via For poor children, trying hard is not enough – CNN.com.

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Student Loan Deal Will Cost Students More in Long Run

“In the last year, Congress has actually trimmed tens of billions of dollars in student aid,” says Joel Packer, executive director of the Committee for Education Funding.

Packer says lawmakers — Republicans and Democrats alike — have actually made it more costly for students to borrow, and those costs dwarf whatever savings students can expect from lower interest rates.

For example, graduate students will now have to pay the interest on their loans while they’re still in school. All students will have to start paying back the money they borrowed immediately after graduation — the six-month grace period during which the government paid the interest is gone.

“That’s disappointing because Congress shouldn’t pay for one education program by cutting another — in this case it’s actually cutting the same one,” Packer says.

That’s not all, he says. Lawmakers have limited the number of semesters needy students can receive a Pell Grant and made it harder to qualify for the maximum award.

“So they’ve made a whole variety of changes. Overall, about $4.6 billion came out of students’ pockets to pay off the federal deficit,” Packer says.

The total cost to students, according to some estimates, is $18 billion to $20 billion extra over the next 10 years.

via Student Loan Deal Pales Against Other Education Cuts : NPR.

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Change.org Drops Michelle Rhee Group Under Pressure From Progressives

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/06/19/changeorg-michelle-rhee_n_1610760.html?utm_hp_ref=divorce&ir=Divorce&utm_source=pulse&utm_medium=direct&utm_medium=referral&utm_source=pulsenews

In a surprising reversal, Change.org, the progressive online powerhouse that channels grassroots energy into petition-based activism, has dropped two anti-union clients, including Michelle Rhee’s StudentsFirst, according to multiple sources familiar with the decision.

The move comes after intense pressure from the labor movement and other progressive allies, who accused the for-profit company of betraying its liberal roots by partnering with Rhee, the former head of Washington, D.C., public schools, and the similarly aligned group Stand for Children headed by education advocate Jonah Edelman. The ouster of StudentsFirst and Stand for Children was confirmed by a Change.org spokesman.

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Obama Proposal To Raise School Dropout Age Falls Flat

President Barack Obama’s call for states to raise the minimum age at which students can drop out of high school seems about as popular as a homework assignment on Friday afternoon.

Since the president urged the change in his State of the Union speech in January, only one state has raised its dropout age to 18, and that won’t take effect for five years.

Even legislators in Obama’s home state of Illinois wouldn’t go along with his proposal, despite an endorsement from the governor. They quickly dumped the issue into the limbo of a special study commission after it became clear there wasn’t enough money to support it.

via Obama Proposal To Raise School Dropout Age Falls Flat.

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Obama, GOP governors share many views on education

Don’t tell that Obama’s gullible supporters on the left:

A funny thing is happening between President Barack Obama and many Republican governors when it comes to improving America’s schools: They are mostly getting along.

After Obama spoke recently to the nation’s governors, Louisiana GOP Gov. Bobby Jindal publicly praised the administration’s efforts on education, and Virginia Republican Gov. Bob McDonnell said there was a lot of room for “common agreement” on fixing schools. Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam, another Republican, introduced Obama in September at the White House before the president announced that states could be freed from stringent rules under the No Child Left Behind law if they met certain conditions.

GOP Gov. Mitch Daniels freely credits Obama and Education Secretary Arne Duncan for helping to pave the way for a “tectonic” shift in education, including comprehensive law changes passed in his home state of Indiana last year that include the rigorous use of teacher evaluations and one of the nation’s most expansive uses of vouchers to help parents send children to private schools.

Paul Krugman would be surprised to learn Obama has similar views to the Republicans on education:

But now one of our two major political parties has taken a hard right turn against education, or at least against education that working Americans can afford. Remarkably, this new hostility to education is shared by the social conservative and economic conservative wings of the Republican coalition, now embodied in the persons of Rick Santorum and Mitt Romney.

And this comes at a time when American education is already in deep trouble.

[...]For the past couple of generations, choosing a less expensive school has generally meant going to a public university rather than a private university. But these days, public higher education is very much under siege, facing even harsher budget cuts than the rest of the public sector. Adjusted for inflation, state support for higher education has fallen 12 percent over the past five years, even as the number of students has continued to rise; in California, support is down by 20 percent.

One result has been soaring fees. Inflation-adjusted tuition at public four-year colleges has risen by more than 70 percent over the past decade. So good luck on finding that college “that has a little lower price.”

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