U.S. government must financially support education

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posted on Nov, 18 2006 @ 05:44 PM
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I am a very strong libertarian, but I have to say one area the government needs to have a much stronger involvement in is education. Now I'm not saying the government should dictate curriculum, schools should have 100% control of that. However, it should be the government's responsibility to ensure that everyone gets a certain standard of education.

Again, as a libertarian, I don't believe in entitlements, whether its health care or education. But education does have a significant difference. Education is crucial to a country's economic power. In the post-industrial Knowledge Economy, education is the primary raw material and educational stratification doesn't suit society anymore (assuming it ever did). It is more important than ever to have smart, knowledgable people, as not only does it boost productivity of the system, but it is also a deterrent to social instability. Right now we are seeing the beginnings of that instability, as more and more parents are unable to pay for their childrens' university education because our capitalist system has turned our colleges into corporate businesses. Many of these schools, particularly the public universities, find every reason to take money from us but provide little in return. If they are going to charge a $40 lab fee IN ADDITION to housing, tuition, meals, technology, etc. etc. etc., then the least they could do is allow changes in majors to go smoothly, for students be guaranteed the classes they need in order to graduate, a higher quality of food and more options for recreation. But that's not happening. University education is simply a rip-off in America these days and imagine how difficult it is for those who have to take out loans.

What I hope to see in this new Congress is a renewed emphasis on education. For too long, our country has held onto this industrial mentality and we have seen just what a dreadful cost it can have in terms of how we stand in the world. Knowledge is truly the most powerful weapon one can have, because you can't take it away from a person. Now I'm not saying the government should completely subsidize every aspect of education. Graduate-level education should be completely left to the people and schools should recieve primary revenue from that. But at the very least, if there is one area where the government should take an active role in, its in providing a free undergraduate university-level education to everybody who prove themselves capable. Do that, and we could concievably decrease the amount of money put into other social programs in this country.

Thoughts?




posted on Nov, 18 2006 @ 06:31 PM
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Well, imo, the education system needs to be repaired from the primary public school level ‘up’…then move on and attempt to tackle higher educational needs. Currently, three out of ten students entering the ninth grade do not finish high-school in the United States (2006 figures).

The public school system are known flagrant wasters of federal, state and local monies as it is…they are so completely "top heavy" that one can not hardly find a teacher anymore. One large municipal district in Texas had an average of three administrators (not employees) per teacher! I would hate to the college programs start operating of the “least common denominator as well”. From my perspective and personal knowledge most of these school “administrators” can not ever approach the “Peter Principle” in their career because they started as incompetent in their positions.

That said, undergraduate programs do currently exist where people that can show a need can gain virtually ‘free’ undergraduate degrees. It may no be the school of one’s first choice…but how would you address that if all college was universally free anyway?

I worked and took out loans (couldn’t get a single grant just FFEL-GSL’s) through two bachelors from a state university and a masters from a private university. Part of my employment package from my first employer out of school was taking over my school loan payments with a full pay-off scheduled as complete at the end of seven years and reimbursement for continued education. Quite an incentive to stay!

But you will find that student loans are relatively nothing compared to what may come your way later in life…at the college level it is entirely up to the individual as to what they ‘get out of’ college….and an education is one of the few investments that one can make that can not be taken away.


mg





 
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