Tennessee Governor Proposes Free Community College for Graduating High School Seniors

Tennessee Governor Bill Haslam proposes giving a free community and technology college education to every graduating senior that wants it.

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Richard Rider - 2/4/2014 10:49 PM
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Tennessee should learn from the disastrous California "free tuition" experience. When students have no skin in the game, their commitment to college is often "iffy." I am an infrequent guess lecturer in CA community colleges. Back when our colleges were free, we had a FORTY PERCENT drop rate -- only 60% of the students who started the class were there at the end of the semester. As a lecturer, I insisted that I speak in the first six weeks of the class, before so many had dropped out. Now California charges about half the national CC average (and still the lowest), though we give up to 40% of our students a "hardship" exemption (just fill out an unverified form and you pay no tuition). So even now, we still have a 25-30% drop rate in the liberal arts classes. But faculty must still be paid and other costs covered. It's a mystery in our Sacramento capitol -- where does this money comes from? You don't need a college degree to figure that out.
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