Those who feel that the tentative steps taken by states in the last two years to boost their higher education budgets after many years of cuts signals a return to out-of-control spending can rest easier. Based on a table published by The Atlantic, on the per-student basis, most states aren\’t near the funding levels that were seen before the 2008 economic decline.
According to a report by the Center On Budget and Policy Priorities, only 2 out of 50 states have showed a net increase in higher education funding since 2008. The remainder have cut their higher ed spending by as little as 3% in Alaska up to 50% in Arizona and Nh.
These cuts are major contributors towards the increase in tuition at both private and public universities. In certain of the states using the steepest cuts, college tuition increases were more than 50% since 2008.
The states that slashed the most didn’t necessarily hike probably the most. Some university systems chose to cope with leaner funding through cost savings — perhaps in the expense of educational quality — by thinning their number of faculty or combining programs. Other states, like Missouri, simply limit public colleges from raising tuition by greater than a certain amount each year.
With the economic recovery excess slow, it is not anticipated that higher education funding will go back to the pre-2008 levels for a while. Although this implies that students are likely have to deal with a constantly steeper college cost, it also means that colleges and universities is deserving of more aggressive about exploring methods for gaining efficiency.
Many schools are considering ways to harness technology to realize cost savings, but although much progress has been created in reinventing the classroom and allowing tech to play a bigger role, adoption is still in the very initial phases and the impact from the change won’t likely to be felt for years — or even decades.
Again, there are some people who might think these cuts are overdue. Others might simply argue that states, needing to balance their budgets, didn’t possess a choice. But I’d argue that these numbers are a vivid illustration showing why Washington’s post-recession path has been so disastrous. Rather than taking advantage of historically low borrowing rates and aiding america, Congress cut the lifeline once the first round of stimulus funding dried up. Graphs like these show us the consequences.