As the nation’s trillion-dollar student debt continues to rise, a new analysis of public higher education’s funding finds dwindling state support is the key factor driving rising tuition costs and deepening student debt. According to Demos, a public policy organization advocating economic opportunity and inclusive democracy, over the last two decades state support for higher education funding shifted to a new paradigm.
As government support of higher education dwindled, public institutions raised tuition costs to recover those lost funds. These increases occurred at both four-year and two-year public institutions. And in that process, families were handed a larger financial burden to fund their children’s college education.
“The shift from a collective funding of higher education to one borne increasingly by individuals”, states the report “has come at the very same time that low-and-middle-income households experienced stagnant or declining household income.”