For the first post of 2015 (happy new year!), I would like to briefly discuss President Obama's recently announced proposal to make the first two years of community college free for students who are willing to work for it.
First and foremost, at face value, I think this is a step in the right direction, and it seems that the main (minor) backlash for it would be where the funding comes from.
Now, the reason why I wanted to talk about this in the first place is because I believe that the education system in place in the States isn't what one would necessarily called "great". Of course, take this criticism with a grain of salt: I'm not that educated about the system, but I am a product of it. I think that warrants a pretty good opinion.
Originally, I was going to make some surface-level comparisons between the education system in the US versus the systems of various other countries around the world. However, I feel that would do little to really hit at the point of the plan President Obama proposed. Instead, I will just make the observation that, it seems education is more highly prioritized in other nations, specifically in Asian and European nations, simply based on some policies put in place that make higher education more accessible.
Anyway, at the heart of the matter is this plan. Putting the money aside, I think that providing this opportunity for, as the proposal says, any state willing to adopt it is something that will inevitably place a higher focus on higher education for more people in the US. Since education will be more accessible, it will also become more realistic. But for me, the most important part of this structure is that a student isn't exactly competing with other students: their opportunity is based solely off of their performance, and not how well they stack up with their classmates. Competition, while good to some extent, should be saved for once they are in higher education.
To sum up, my simple pros and cons are:
- Pros: higher emphasis placed on education, provides opportunities for anyone who has the drive
- Cons: costly
I think there is much more to be said on the topic, but I'm learning how to be more brief with my words so I don't end up on long rants. Call it a new year's resolution if you want, but I honestly don't write enough to make it terribly difficult to achieve. Maybe that should be my resolution...
Leave a comment below with your thoughts! Part of the reason why I made this shorter is because I would like to open up discussion on the topic as a whole =)