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Links for 3/3/11

Posted on March 30th, 2011, by Leave a comment

Professor X via Scott Jaschik

“I have had no choice but to recognize that many of my students have no business being in college,” he writes. “Putting an end to their participation without sentencing them to a life in the aisles of Wal-Mart would require that Americans relinquish their ill-thought-out love affair with higher education…

I’m not sure that it’s practical, possible or even desirable to reform K-12 to prepare more students for college. I do think we need to rethink exactly who needs to go to college. The college experience may be wonderful to some, but if you’re failing your courses, it can be nothing short of torturous…

Richard Kahlenberg

most Yale students “never actually decided to go to college; it was simply the next step in their lives, one not requiring a rationale.”…

Southern students, by contrast, made a conscious decision to pursue higher education and then mostly chose Southern based on “cost and convenience.”…

Michael J. Petrilli

Today’s teacher compensation system is perfectly designed to repel ambitious individuals. We offer mediocre starting salaries, provide meager raises even after hard-earned skills have been gained on the job and backload the most generous benefits (in terms of pensions) toward the end of 30 years of service. More fundamentally, for decades we’ve prioritized smaller classes over higher teacher pay. If we had kept class sizes constant over the past 50 years, the average teacher today would be making $100,000…

Michelle Singletary

Student loans are like no other loans. Lenders and debt collection companies can come after federal loan defaulters with a vengeance. Loan payments can be deducted from a borrower’s wages, income tax refunds can be snatched, or the account can be turned over for collection, which of course means more fees added to the loan. Federal benefit payments for defaulters, including Social Security benefits, can be taken. Borrowers can be sued for the entire amount of the loan, and there is no time limit for collection on federal student loans. They are liable for any collection or court costs; and they might not be able to renew a professional license. On top of this, it’s nearly impossible to erase the debt in bankruptcy…

As a society, we bought into the fantasy that student loan debt was always a good investment…

Student loans come with more risk than many people can handle…

Mike Antonucci

the average retired teacher in California made more than the average working teacher in 28 states…