Will Free College Offer Catch Fire? NY Details Raise Doubts

April 18 00:29 2017

So Cuomo proposed and on Wednesday signed legislation to make tuition free at NY public colleges for anybody coming from a family making no more than $100,000 a year, with the cap rising to $125,000 in 2019.

FILE – In this January 3, 2017, file photo, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, right, and Vermont Sen.

Cuomo has always emphasized that his plan is created to help middle-class families-from his news release announcing the proposal in January to a post on Sunday on Medium, a blogging website.

“It’s absolutely bait and switch”, she said. Starting in the fall of 2018, the Excelsior Scholarship will give families that make $100,000 or less free tuition at a State University of New York (SUNY) or City University of New York (CUNY) institution. Virginia should pay close attention, especially now that a Democratic candidate for governor, Tom Perriello, has been traveling to college campuses across the state touting free community college to all young Virginians.

The program will not cover extra fees and room and board which add up quickly.

The proposed budget plan for NY couples the state taxpayer-funded grants with federal Pell Grants, which has been shown to increase tuition as much as 40 cents on the dollar.

Fifth, Cuomo’s law threatens to destroy some of New York’s private colleges. It also includes $8 million to pay for resources such as e-books. “A lot of us are planning on going on to get our bachelor’s”.

FILE – In this April 10, 2017, file photo, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo signs new legislation for free state college tuition and juvenile justice reform, during a signing ceremony in New York. Tuition is free for the student.

It will be phased over three years and will begin this year, but will only apply to families making up to 100k. For them, an Excelsior Scholarship will not be the deciding factor between going to SUNY Buffalo and taking a job at McDonald’s. As Rick Seltzer writes for InsideHigherEd, even though demand for private college education has been artificially inflated by government policies, the folks who run private colleges are concerned that demand will now be shifted away from their schools and toward government-run institutions. Schools have no incentive to control and drive down the costs of educating students knowing that funding is guaranteed.

“Free tuition” isn’t free. Middle- and upper-class students flock to the low-priced alternative, freezing out students with fewer resources who don’t have as good grades.

But the requirements don’t end with graduation. So despite NY being a sanctuary city and having a strong undocumented student movement, the undocumented can not partake in the scholarship. Any serious enforcement will likely incur greater overhead costs. That would involve setting tuition as a proportion of a general index of ability to pay, such as state median family income or GDP per capita.

“While I appreciate this step toward a fair education for everyone, I can’t help but worry about an oversaturated job market in the future”, Sheehan said.

The sad reality is, though, that New Yorkers are fleeing in droves.

“We look forward to further expanding our support of students and their families as a result of this budget agreement”, Stanley said.

The scholarship affects another area college as well – Jamestown Community College. The tax wedge is the dollar measure of the income tax rate.

Unfortunately, this is a solution in search of a problem.

There’s a big outcome for moving or working out of state. And just how necessary is this proposal when 84 percent of SUNY and CUNY graduates already remain here?

This historic deal is one that can change the lives of a generation of college bound students.

what's the catch? Cuomo's promise of free college tuition has a major catch, experts say

Will Free College Offer Catch Fire? NY Details Raise Doubts
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