Reasons That the Funding of Education Is Such a Big Issue

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Brian Levine
Mr. Diver
ECON 12H
November 27 2012

Reasons that the funding of education is such a big issue

The question is, Should the federal government be responsible for funding a college education? Although it may not be the most important thing in the world right now, finding a way to fund education is a major issue in America. For the people that are either in college or are paying for somebody else to go to college, which is almost every parent and even some teenagers who have to pay their own tuition, it is a huge issue. For the most part, the biggest problem is finding the money to pay for somone to go to these colleges, even with the extra money. As Tamar Lewin states in one of his articles, “College tuition and fees increased 439 percent from 1982 to 2007 while median family income rose 147 percent.”(Lewin). This is why families can no longer pay for their kids’ educations and need a way to get money to help them send their kids to college where they can earn the education they need to become successful. Another reason that this is such a big issue is because, unfortunitely, money does not grow on trees and the money used to get these students into their colleges comes from taxes. Many of the people who are currently receiving money from the government to attend college probrably do not mind paying the extra money, but once they are done with college, they will begin to change their view on this and will start to think that it is unfair that they have to pay taxes for something that does not even benefit them. It is things like this make it very hard for this system of funding to work.

Opposing sides of the issue

With such a big issue like this, there are many factors that can alter somebodies perspective on the problem dramatically. These factors have caused the solution of this issue to be split into two sides, one believing that college funding should not be controlled by the federal government and the other stating that they could need even more control. The people that believe the government should not control college funding state that “It drives up tuition costs, encourages bloat and inefficiency, and is an unfair burden on taxpayers.”(McCluskey). They also state that it “poses a threat to the core strengths of American higher education, including institutional autonomy, competition, and innovation.”(McCluskey). On the other hand, the people that believe the funding of college education should be controlled by the government state that “federal grants and loans help offset costs of education for students and families”(Yudof). They also say that many more problems would be solved if the federal role in the issue is expanded, believing that this “Could reduce the seemingly endless pressure on universities to raise tuition and fees, making education more accessible to lower-and middle-income students. It also could increase the capacity of institutions to accommodate a higher percentage of the population.”(Yudof). Each side strongly follows their beliefs and it will be difficult to figure out a way to make each side happy.

Impact of this issue on the economy

Although it may not seem like it, the amount of money spent on college educations by both the students attending and the government is gigantic. It is almost impossible to figure out how much money each college makes a year from all of it’s students, and I garaunty it will be more than you expected. According to the Cato Institute, “The Department of Education spends about $30 billion a year on subsidies for higher education. The bulk of that funding goes toward student aid programs, with the balance going toward grants to educational institutions.”(McCluskey). Also, although tons of American money is used on these colleges, students from all around the world come to America and help boost the economy. The U.S. has some of the best colleges in the world and makes a large sum of money from people around the...
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