It’s all about the states. A big question is how a plan could work in all of them.
The United States has no national system of higher education, and each of the states works somewhat differently. Overlooking this basic fact risks creating a policy that could make things worse instead of better.
All of the leading Democratic presidential candidates want to make college free for at least some students. Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren say all public colleges should be tuition-free. Pete Buttigieg has proposed making public college tuition free for families earning up to $100,000, saying at Thursday’s debate that “I just want you to go ahead and pay your own tuition” if “you’re in that lucky top 10 percent.” And Joe Biden has proposed eliminating tuition at community colleges, but not at four-year ones.
But the candidates’ plans generally fail to explain how the federal government should make college free nationwide. States vary widely in how well they fund their public colleges, and how much they charge for tuition. In-state prices for a year at a four-year public college range from about $6,000 in Florida and Wyoming to about $17,000 in Vermont and New Hampshire. States that charge students the most tend to be those that fund their colleges the least.
For the full article click here: https://www.nytimes.com/2019/12/20/upshot/50-reasons-free-college-misunderstood.html