The hashtag #MakeCollegeAffordable has making it’s rounds on Twitter and Facebook this week, being endorsed by foundations, ed reform and other education advocacy groups. In all the tweets and RTs, there is hardly anyone criticizing the strong push for making college education more affordable, and the hidden agenda.
Here are 2 serious issues with this push –
1) Shifting the conversation away from rectifying issues with K-12 public education – And let’s face it, there are a lot of jobs that need little or no postsecondary education. Improving the quality of K-12 education, equalizing the playing field (i.e. kids in low income neighborhoods have opportunities and expectations), and ensuring that the curriculum/pedagogy is relevant and rigorous will help do away the need for 4-year degrees for jobs that don’t require them.
2) Seeking to make a profit from student debt – Matt Taibbi write a great article on the ways in which american youth are being completely ripped off by loan making institutions, and how the federal government seeks to benefit from this.
The White House really needs to start thinking about student success (not corporate interests), instead of propogandizing #makecollegeaffordable. There are some common sense, albeit (un)capitalistic, ways to help young people succeed after high school. College isn’t always the answer.